January Sweet Club Iowa

 

Sweet Wine ClubRoscato-Bianco-Label-Update-Bottle-ShotwebRoscato
Bianco Dolce
Northern Italy

NECTAR WINE STYLE

Pale straw in color with fine, delicate bubbles, the Bianco Dolce has delicate aromas of peach, yellow apples and candied citrus. The palate is sweet, yet refreshing with a lingering finish.

Analysis: 8% alcohol / volume
Varietal: Blend of native and international grape varieties
TA: 5.70 g/L
RS: 95 g/L
Region: Northern Italy
Appellation:
Trevenezie IGT
Vinification:
Each variety is harvested and vinified separately, allowing the grapes to reach perfect ripeness. Following de-stemming, the must is macerated with the skins allowing it to retain maximum fragrance. The must is kept at a low temperature until fermentation, at which point the varieties are blended together. When the wine has reached an alcohol content of 8%, fermentation is interrupted by lowering temperature to approximately 32°F leaving a high level of natural residual sugar.
Notable: Vegan, gluten free
Serving Suggestions: Highly versatile, the Bianco Dolce is a great aperitif and equally great with white meats, classic Italian dishes, and spicy foods. Enjoy well-chilled.

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


roscato_moscato_bottle-webRoscato
Moscato
Northern Italy

NECTAR WINE STYLE

This Moscato is straw-yellow in color with vivid greenish reflections. The nose has varied notes of candied citrus, ripe fruit and white flowers. The palate is sweet and fresh in taste with delicate bubbles, and a pleasant, fruity, persistent aftertaste.

Analysis: 7% alcohol / volume
Varietal: Moscato
TA: 5.50 g/L
RS: 100 g/L
Region: Trentino/Veneto
Appellation: Trevenezie IGT
Vinification:
The grapes are harvested and vinified to reach perfect ripeness. Following de-stemming, the juice is kept on the skins for several days at low temperatures to extract the fruit’s aromas and retain maximum fragrance.
Notable: Vegan, gluten free
Serving Suggestions: Ideal as a dessert wine, but it also pairs well with delicate cheeses, spicy foods or barbecue dishes.

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

ABOUT ROSCATO:
Roscato is an irresistible range of high-quality wines from Northern Italy, near the Italian Alps and Lake Garda – the ideal climate for perfect wine-growing conditions. The winery combines traditional grape growing methods with modern winemaking techniques to produce their lively wines. Whether you are a fan of sweet, rich, bold or soft & silky wines, Roscato wines offer a perfect complement to any cuisine. Learn more here.


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January Premium Wine Club

Mellow style logoRuffion-modus-wine-bottleRuffino
Modus Toscana IGT
Tuscany, Italy

MELLOW WINE STYLE

Ruby red in color, and complex, fruity and intense on the nose. The initial aromas are of mature black fruits, such as cherries, plums, and small blackberries typical of Sangiovese. There are also floral notes that are complimented by hints of spiced cinnamon and cloves. On the palate, it is full-bodied and harmonious with modern Super Tuscan finesse and style. This wine is rich with soft tannins and flavors of mature blackberry fruit that lead to a persistent finish.

Analysis: 14.5% alcohol / volume
Varietal: 37% Sangiovese, 32% Merlot, 31% Cabernet Sauvignon
Grape Sourcing:
Ruffino’s Poggio Casciano Estate
Soil:
Hilly land with clay, limestone, and a small percentage of silt
Micro-climate:
Variable with good diurnal temperature swings, especially during summer
Growing System:
Cordon trained
Vine density:
12,000 per acre
Age of vineyards:
Recently planted
First Year of Production:
1997
Food Pairings: Wonderful on its own, or serve with bold dishes such as duck with olives and pancetta, beef-stuffed manicotti with Bolognese sauce, or aged cheeses such as T
aleggio, Pecorino and/or Gouda.

VINIFICATION AND AGING:
Harvest: Only the best grapes are selected in the vineyards to ensure optimal ripeness when picked. They are again sorted prior to pressing. Due to a warm and dry growing season, the harvest began earlier than usual, as the high summer temperatures led to beautiful fruit maturation.
Fermentation: Each varietal was vinified independently, fermenting in temperature-controlled stainless-steel vats at an average temperature of 82ºF for 10 days. The wine was then allowed to macerate on the skins for another 2 weeks.
Aging: After completing malolactic fermentation, the 3 varietals were blended and aged for 12 months in French oak barrels of first and second use.


Ruffio-riserva-ducale-wine-bottleMellow style logoRuffino
Riserva Ducale
Chianti Classico Riserva
Tuscany, Italy

MELLOW WINE STYLE

Ruby red in color, the nose has an elegant bouquet characterized by violet, cherries, wild berries and plums. There are hints of tobacco, clove and eucalyptus. On the palate, the Riserva Ducale is balance and constant with delicate tannins. The vibrant acidity characterizes this wine, which is typical of Sangiovese’s grapes. The finish is persistent and a good structure completes the entire taste sensation.

Analysis: 14.5% alcohol / volume
Varietal:
80% Sangiovese, 20% Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon
Grape Sourcing:
The Riserva Ducale grapes came from owned vineyards and selected growers vineyards located in the traditional Chianti Classico production area, stretching over the provinces of Siena and Florence. Ruffino traditionally works with a small stable of hand-selected growers, chosen as carefully as the Ruffino vineyards.
Soil: Typical of the Chianti Classico area; a mix of clay and limestone with an abundant presence of “Galestro” rock.
Altitude:
Variable from 951 to 1,476 feet above sea level
Growing System:
Cordon trained
Vine density:
about 12,350 vines/acre
Bottle Aging:
A minimum of 3 months
First Year of Production:
1927
Food Pairings: Enjoy this timeless Tuscan gem with Italian favorites such as prosciutto and other antipasti, mushroom risotto, pasta Bolognese, and chicken cacciatore. Or, pair it with simple grilled meats and roasted vegetables for a classic Tuscan meal.

VINIFICATION AND AGING:
Harvest: The vintage was characterized by a very hot season with a good maturation of the grapes, which led to a slightly early harvest.
Fermentation: Alcoholic fermentation and maceration were aided by pumping over, which took place in thermo-controlled stainless-steel vats for approximately 16 days.
Aging: The Riserva Ducale aged for 24 months, 12 in big oak casks and the rest in concrete vats.


Mellow style logoRuffino Riserva Ducale OroRuffino
Riserva Ducale Oro
Chianti Classico Gran Selezione DOCG
Tuscany, Italy

MELLOW WINE STYLE

The Riserva Ducale Oro is also Ruby Red in color with hues of garnet. It is powerfully aromatic with cherry, plum, and violet with notes of eucalyptus, chocolate and spicy black pepper. The complexity is an authentic expression of Sangioveses and Classic Chiantis. The wine is full-bodied and powerfully fruity with elegant tannins, perfectly supported by a good acidity. The finish is characterized by pleasantly sweet tobacco, plums, and balsamic herbs. This Riserva Ducale Oro will age gracefully for decades.

Analysis: 14.5% alcohol / volume
Varietal:
83% Sangiovese, 12% Merlot, 5% Colorino
Grape Sourcing:
Selected from Ruffino’s Gretole and Santedame estates, located in the heart of Castellina in Chianti.
Soil: Hilly land with poor, rocky, ‘galestro’ soils of mixed clay and sand
Microclimate:
Characterized by hot, dry summers with high diurnal temperature swings, which allow for optimal grape maturation.
Altitude:
820-1,300 feet above sea level
Sun Exposure:
Predominantly south, southwest, and southeast
Growing System:
Cordon-trained
Vine density:
10,000 per acre
Age of Vineyards: 
Vine yield: 12 tons per acre
First Year of Production:
1947
Food Pairings: Traditional Italian dishes pair exquisitely with this wine. Try with a pasta Bolognese, wild boar ragu, or eggplant Parmesan. It also pairs beautifully with American dishes such as grilled rib-eye and roasted vegetables.

VINIFICATION AND AGING:
Harvest: Riserva Ducale Oro Chianti Classico Gran Selezione is produced with grapes meticulously selected during harvest. The picking started the third week of September and ended the first week of October. The vintage 2015 shows a vivid fruity notes, with spicy hints of great elegance.
Fermentation: Aided by racking and délestage, fermentation took place in thermo-controlled stainless-steel vats at an average temperature of 82ºF for 21 days. Post-fermentation maceration on the skins continued for an additional 10 days. The wine was transferred to concrete vats for malolactic fermentation.
Aging: A total of 36 months: the first 12 months in concrete vats, followed by 12 months in Slavonian oak barrels (about 925-2,000 gallons), and finally 12 months in barriques that are four or more years old.

ABOUT RUFFINO WINERY:
In 1877, cousins, Ilario and Leopoldo Ruffino, embraced their passion for winemaking by establishing a small winery in the town of Pontassieve, near Florence. Natives to Tuscany, they knew this region already had century-old traditions of growing exceptional wine grapes, but cousins felt that much of the area’s greatness had yet to be revealed. Word eventually grew about the quality wine the Ruffino cousin’s were producing and the winery began to flourish. Ruffino became known for clean, balanced wines. They became nationally and internationally known when their Chianti won Gold Medals and other prizes in 1881, 1884 and 1885 Wine Exhibitions. In 1890, the Duke of Aosta became intrigued by the winery’s reputation, and after trying it for himself, he appointed Ruffino as the official supplier to the Italian Royal family. In 1927, the winery released their first vintage of Riserva Ducale – named after the Duke of Aosta to acknowledge his esteemed patronage.

Today, Ruffino has a collection of estates in Tuscany’s most important wine appellations. They continue to take a traditional approach when making their wines to allow their wines to reveal themselves without manipulation. Ruffino has established itself as a leader in Chianti, as they have become a global ambassador of Tuscan wines around the world. Learn more here. 


Mellow style logoFrescobaldi-Nipozzano-RiservaFrescobaldi
Castello Nipozzano
Nipozzano Riserva
Tuscany, Italy

MELLOW WINE STYLE

The Nipozzano 2017 conveys the intense, harmonious character of the vintage with personality, translating the heat of the season into the glass. The ruby-red color is bright and intense. The usual notes of red fruits and citrus are expressed in a seductive combination of elegance and intensity. Tertiary notes due to aging, such as spices and vanilla, enhance the aromas and balance the tasting experience. The palate is rich, dense and balanced, with a great expression of maturity, polyphenolic elegance and final persistence.

Analysis: 13.5% alcohol / volume
Varietal:
Sangiovese and complementary varieties
Critical Acclaim:

  • James Suckling: 92 Points
  • Gambero Rosso: 3 Glasses
  • Luca Maroni: 90 Points

VINIFICATION AND AGING:
Harvest: The winter was mild and dry. In the spring, the early sprouting of the vines brought the growing season forward. During spring, the arrival of sporadic rains restored the vineyards’ water table, guaranteeing a good blooming, still ahead of time with respect to the previous season. The harvest began at the end of August/first few days of September, after a hot, dry summer that led to the harvesting of well-ripened grapes, qualitatively rich in body and color. As soon as the grapes were harvested, they were taken to the cellar.
Fermentation: Once de-stemmed, the natural fermentation process began in thermo-regulated stainless steel vats. The wine remained in the vats to complete maceration. After racking, malolactic fermentation took place in steel as well.
Aging: At the end of the year, the wine was transferred into barriques, where it was aged for further months. A further period in the bottle brought Nipozzano to its full expression as a wine with exceptional balance.

ABOUT FRESCOBALDI WINERY:
Beginning in the early 1300s, the Frescobaldi family has been producing wine in Tuscany for over seven hundred years. That family history is filled with illustrious ancestors, from literary figures, explorers, and musicians, to financiers, bishops, and statesmen. Over the years, the Frescobaldi family had established commercial contracts and relationships, and had the opportunity to share their wine with numerous historical names and courts such as the Court of England, the Papal Court in Rome, Donatello, Michelozzo, Michelozzi, and Filippo Brunelleschi.

The winery has been passed down in the family from generation to generation, building many different sub-family estates over the years. Today, the President, Lamberto Frescobaldi, aims to strengthen the uniqueness of the wines of each family estate. The Frescobaldi family believes each family estate, and their vineyards, should express the diversity and individuality of their Tuscan terroir while always respecting their nature and authenticity. Learn more about the family history here.


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Raised by Wolves 777 Chardonnay

Delicious,Fish,Cakes,With,Dill,Closeup,In,A,Pan,OnMaryland Crab Cakes with Tartar Sauce

INGREDIENTS:

  • For the Crab Cakes:
    • 2 large eggs
    • 2-1/2 tablespoons mayonnaise, best quality such as Hellmann’s or Duke’s
    • 1-1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
    • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
    • 1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/4 cup finely diced celery, from one stalk
    • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
    • 1 pound lump crab meat (see note below)
    • 1/2 cup panko
    • Vegetable or canola oil, for cooking
  • For the Quick Tartar Sauce:
    • 1 cup mayonnaise, best quality such as Hellmann’s or Duke’s
    • 1-1/2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
    • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
    • 1 tablespoon minced red onion
    • 1-2 tablespoons lemon juice, to taste
    • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

DIRECTIONS:

For the Crab Cakes:

  1. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil for easy clean-up.
  2. Combine the eggs, mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire, Old Bay, salt, celery, and parsley in a large bowl and mix well. Add the crab meat (be sure to check the meat for any hard and sharp cartilage) and panko; using a rubber spatula, gently fold the mixture together until just combined, being careful not to shred the crab meat. Shape into 6 cakes (each about ½ cup) and place on the prepared baking sheet. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. This helps them set.
  3. Preheat a large nonstick pan over medium heat and coat with oil. When the oil is hot, place the crab cakes in the pan and cook until golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes per side. Be careful as oil may splatter. Serve the crab cakes warm with the tartar sauce.

For the Quick Tartar Sauce: In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, relish, mustard, onion, and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Cover and chill until ready to serve.

Make-Ahead Instructions: The crab cakes can be formed, covered, and refrigerated a day ahead of time before cooking. The tartar sauce can be made and refrigerated up to 2 days in advance.

Note: If you can only find jumbo lump crab meat, you may need to break the pieces up a bit. If the clumps are too large, the crab cakes won’t hold together well.

© Recipe courtesy of Jenn Segal of Once Upon a Chef.

JANUARY WINE CLUB:

Rich WineStylesRaised-By-Wolves-777-Chardonnay-wine-bottleRaised by Wolves
777 Chardonnay
Piekenierskloof, South Africa

RICH WINE STYLE

The Cape is generally regarded as a hot viticultural region. Fortunately, there are some cool mesoclimates to be found close to the ocean or at higher altitudes. With high altitude generally comes a more continental climate, and so it is with this Piekenierskloof Chardonnay, grown between 700 and 800 meters above sea level on the Sandveld plateau bordering the Olifants river.

The 777 Chardonnay is whole bunch pressed, settled overnight without the use of enzymes, and then racked straight to barrel for uninoculated fermentation.

After maturing for 9 months in 228L Burgundian pieces, the Chardonnay was cleanly racked and bottled.

Appellation: Western Cape, Citrusdal Mountain, Olifants River Valley, Piekenierskloof Ward
Varietal:
100% Chardonnay
Analysis:
13.69% alcohol / volume

Residual Sugar: 2.1 g/L
VA:
0.54 g/L
pH:
3.33
TA:
5.3 g/L
SO₂:
13/72 ppm
Bottled: 8/10/2018
Grower:
Shelley Sandell

Raised by WolvesABOUT RAISED BY WOLVES:
Raised by Wolves is a project by Adam Mason, leading Wine Industry Specialist. Adam’s wines are produced in limited quantities, and are made from a selection of unique vineyards from his travels around the cape. He has showcased how interesting and rare the Cape’s vineyards can be; these small batch, experimental wines have transformed the Cape into one of the more dynamic regions in the world. 

 

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Raised by Wolves Old School Red Blend

Pizza

Photo Credit: Copyright Anson Smart

Pizza Vesuvio with the Works

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 cup frozen artichoke hearts, thawed, sliced
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 pound pizza dough, thawed if frozen
  • All-purpose flour, for dusting
  • 1/2 cup fresh ricotta (4 ounces)
  • 3/4 pound fresh mozzarella, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 ounces thinly sliced baked ham, cut into 1-inch strips
  • 2 ounces salami, cut into 1-inch strips
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons marinara sauce
  • 2 large cremini mushrooms, sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • 4 pitted olives, sliced 1/4 inch thick

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Set a pizza stone in the oven and preheat the oven to 500°. Let the stone heat for 30 minutes. In a bowl, lightly drizzle the artichoke hearts with oil. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. On a floured work surface, roll or stretch the pizza dough out to a 12-inch round, about 1/8 inch thick. Roll the edge on half of the pizza 1/16 inch thick. Generously flour a pizza peel. Transfer the dough to the peel and lightly brush with oil. Top the thinner side of the dough with half of the artichokes, mozzarella, ricotta, ham and salami, 3 inches from the edge. Sprinkle with half of the oregano and drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the marinara. Lift the 3-inch edge of dough over the filling and press to seal in the center of the round.
  3. Spread the remaining 1/4 cup of marinara over the dough, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Arrange the remaining artichoke hearts, mozzarella, ham and salami over the marinara. Spoon small dollops of ricotta over the toppings, then scatter the mushrooms and olives on top. Sprinkle with the remaining oregano.
  4. Slide the pizza onto the hot stone and bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until crisp and bubbling. Cut into wedges and serve.

© Recipe courtesy of Francis Ford Coppola from Food & Wine.

JANUARY WINE CLUB:

Bold wine Style logoRaised by Wolves Cinsaut Cabernet SauvignonRaised by Wolves
Old School
Cinsaut Cabernet Sauvignon
Stellenbosch, South Africa

BOLD WINE STYLE

Having enjoyed many old South African Cabernet Sauvignons from the 1960’s and 1970’s, Adam Mason was enthralled to discover that many of these old gems contained far greater percentages of Cinsaut than Cabernet Sauvignon, reflecting the actual plantings of both varieties at the time. Using possibly the oldest producing Cinsaut vineyard in Stellenbosch (planted in 1965) and Bonniemile Cabernet planted in the 1980’s, Adam attempted to pay homage to this uniquely South African story. Vinification of both varieties was carried out in separate concrete ‘kuipe’ before transferring to barrels for 18 months maturation.

Appellation: Stellenbosch, South Africa
Varietal: 2/3 Rustenhof Cinsaut, 1/3 Bonniemile Cabernet Sauvignon
Analysis:
12.81% alcohol / volume
Residual Sugar: 1.8 g/L
VA:
0.79 g/L
pH:
3.66
TA:
5.3 g/L
SO₂:
5/65 ppm
Bottled: 10/18/2019
Growers:

  • Rustenhof: Pieter Bredell
  • Bonniemile: Deon Joubert

Raised by WolvesABOUT RAISED BY WOLVES:
Raised by Wolves offers exceptional wines with excellent values. Made as a project by Wine Industry Specialist, Adam Mason, Adam says the name is a parody of the constant one-upmanship between winemakers. He mocks other winemakers’ statements of ‘my wine is single vineyard!’, or ‘Yeah, well my wine is naturally fermented…’, and ‘Oh yeah, well my wine is hand sorted by berry.’, by saying “My wines are all of the above, and I was raised by wolves.” – Adam Mason. Adam’s wines are produced in limited quantities, and are made from a selection of unique vineyards from his travels around the Cape, showcasing how interesting and rare the Cape’s vineyards can be. 

 

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December Sweet Club Iowa

 

Sweet Wine Clubpiquitos moscato sweet wine clubPiquitos
Moscato
D.O. Valencia, Spain

NECTAR WINE STYLE

A fizzy moscato dedicated to wine lovers without complexes looking for fun and to get a party started.

This Moscato is bright lemon-gold in color with a light pearliness in its appearance. The nose is clean and youthful with heavy floral and fruity notes of mandarin peel, honeysuckle and sweet orange blossom. The palate has a sweetness that coats the mouth, then refreshes itself with the airy bubbles. It is luscious and harmoniously balanced.

Analysis: 11% alcohol / volume
Varietal: 100% Moscatel
TA: 5.47 g/L
pH: 3.23
RS: 51.2 g/L
V. Acidity: 0.15 g/L
Region: D.O. Valencia, Spain
Vineyard:
Valley Valentino & Alto Turia in the heart of Valencia
Age of Vines: 15-20 year-old vines
Yield: 50 hl/ha
Altitude: 200-650 m.
Climate: Warm Mediterranean
Harvest: First fortnight of September
Vinification: Cold Maceration
Fermentation: 53.6-60.8ºF
Aging: Stainless Steel

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

ABOUT THE WINERY: 
Piquitos is intended to mean “little kisses” in Spanish, as their wines are designed to share their love. Sourced from sunny Mediterranean Coast in Valencia, Spain, Piquitos is made by the team from Hammeken Cellars – an innovative producer and exporter of Spanish wines. Their philosophy is to gather the best local grapes and traditions in Spain and pair those with the “New World” winemaking techniques and styles to produce high quality, fruit forward and fresh wines. Learn more about their company here.


Tintero moscato wineCantine Elvio Tintero
Moscato d’Asti ‘Sori Gramella’
Piedmont, Italy

NECTAR WINE STYLE

Delightfully fizzy and slightly sweet, an irresistible combination.

The third generation Tintero family continues the traditions of winemaking in Gramella. “Sori” in Piedmontese indicates the south-facing slope of a hill, that pampers the grapes with 20% more sunshine. Cantine Elvio Tintero are the only producers to sustainable farm and commercially bottle from this striking single-vineyard, limestone amphitheater. Vines were planted in the late 1980’s. Grapes are harvested and pressed, then kept at low temperatures in stainless steel tanks to provide the freshest wine possible.

Analysis: 7% alcohol / volume
Varietal: Moscato

Appellation: Moscato d’Asti, Langhe
RS: 110 g/L
Vine Age: Average 30 years
Soil Type: Clay, limestone with rocks
Vineyard Area: 25 hectares
Producer: Marco Tintero
Founded: 1900
Annual Production: 41,000 cases
Farming: Sustainable

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

ABOUT THE WINERY:
The winery’s legacy began in 1900 when a Frenchman named Pierre Tintero set out to Piedmont in search of work. Here, he found a job helping a widow, Rosina Cortese with her small estate, and just a few years later the couple fell in love, married and continued to grow their estate. Passed down from generation to generation, the family eventually took over the adjacent vineyard plots and began growing a small production of Moscato. It wasn’t until 1980, when grandson, Elvio, began experimenting with frizzante wine production, allowing the family to take advantage of the grape’s special affinity to the local terroir. Today, Elvio help’s his son and daughter-in-law run the estate producing fresh, easy and fun wines to drink with friends. Learn more about their story
here.


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Maison Louis Latour Pinot Noir Les Pierres Dorées

Rack of LambGarlic-Crusted Roast Rack of Lamb

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 head of garlic (cloves peeled)
  • ¼ cup rosemary leaves
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 racks of lamb, frenched (2 pounds each)
  • salt and freshly ground pepper

DIRECTIONS:

  1. In a mini food processor, combine the garlic, rosemary and olive oil and process until the garlic is finely chopped. Season the lamb racks with salt and pepper and rub the garlic-rosemary oil all over them. Set the racks fat side up on a large rimmed baking sheet and let stand for 1 hour.
  2. Preheat the oven to 450°F. Roast the lamb in the upper third of the oven for 15 minutes. Turn the racks and roast for 10 minutes longer for medium-rare meat. Transfer the racks to a carving board, stand them upright and let rest for 10 minutes.
  3. Carve the racks in between the rib bones and transfer to plates. Serve right away.

© Recipe courtesy of Kenny Rochford from Food & Wine.

DECEMBER WINE CLUB:

pinot noir les pierres dorees
Louis Latour
Pinot Noir Les Pierres Dorées
Burgundy, France

MELLOW WINE STYLE

The Les Pierres Dorées Pinot Noir has an intense, bright red color with red-garnet hues. On the nose, there are notes of flowers, red berries and soft spices. On the palate, it is round and full-bodied. It has a great deal of freshness with long under notes of black fruits.

Varietal: Pinot Noir
Analysis:
13-13.2% alcohol / volume
Region: Beaujolais, France
Village: Les Pierres Dorées
Appellation: Burgundy
Average Vine Age:
7 years
Soil: Clay and limestone with Iron-oxide
Harvest: Mechanical
Fermentation: Traditional in open vats
Aging: 10 to 12 months aging in stainless steel vats and oak barrels
Barrels: Louis Latour cooperage, French oak, medium toasted
Cellaring Potential: 5-7 years
Serving Temperature: 57.2-60.8ºF
Food Pairing: Rack of lamb, quail with grapes, red tuna tartare, sea bass, goat cheese, red fruit soup
Critical Acclaim:
James Suckling 2018, 89 pts

WINERY NOTES:
Maison Louis Latour once again exports its Burgundian know-how outside of the Côte d’Or. After the great successes of Ardèche and Var, they decided to repeat the experience in the heart of Beaujolais with the planting of 20 hectares of Pinot Noir. The calcareous soil rich in iron oxide gives a very particular ochre color, and the high altitude contribute to produce a surprising wine which associates richness and freshness with a beautiful aromatic complexity. This region offers beautiful argilo-calcareous soils, the plots selected by Maison Louis Latour form two islands and are situated on the villages of Morancé and Theizé. With a continental moderate climate, vineyards benefit from an ideal period of sunshine but the temperatures are relatively fresh due to an elevation between 280 and 400 meters.

ABOUT MAISON LOUIS LATOUR:
Founded in 1797, Maison Louis Latour has been apart of Burgundian history for more than two centuries. Authentic and independent, the winery is now run by the 11th generation of the founding family. The family is determined to preserve the winery’s unique heritage. Today, the Latour’s family Domaine spreads over 50 hectares of exceptional vineyards. Learn more about their history here.

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Maison Simonnet-Febvre Chablis Premier Cru Vaillons

GougèresGougères

INGREDIENTS:

  • 6 tablespoons (¾ stick) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • 1¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 4 large eggs
  • 6 ounces (1½ cups) grated Comté cheese or Gruyère
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 large egg yolk

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Bring butter, salt, nutmeg, and 1 cup water to a boil in a medium saucepan, stirring until butter is melted. Remove from heat, add flour, and stir to combine.
  2. Cook mixture over medium heat, stirring vigorously with a wooden spoon, until mixture pulls away from sides of pan and forms a ball, about 2 minutes. Continue to cook, stirring vigorously, until a dry film forms on bottom and sides of pan and dough is no longer sticky, about 2 minutes longer. Remove pan from heat and let dough cool slightly, about 2 minutes. Mix in whole eggs one at a time, incorporating fully between additions. Mix in cheese and pepper.
  3. Scrape dough into a piping bag fitted with a ½” round tip (alternatively, use a plastic bag with a ½” opening cut diagonally from 1 corner). Pipe 1” rounds about 2” apart onto 2 parchment-lined baking sheets. Whisk egg yolk and 1 tsp. water in a small bowl; brush rounds with egg wash.
  4. Bake gougères until puffed and golden and dry in the center (they should sound hollow when tapped), 20–25 minutes.
  5. NOTE: Dough can be made 4 hours ahead. Cover and chill. Gougères can be baked 2 hours ahead; reheat before serving.

© Recipe courtesy of Mimi Thorisson of Bon Appétit.

DECEMBER WINE CLUB:

chablis premier cru vaillonsMaison Simonnet-Febvre
Chablis Premier Cru “Vaillons”
Burgundy, France

SILKY WINE STYLE

The Chablis Premier Cru “Vaillons” has notes of citrus and white flowers. The mouth is long and complex with a pronounced, lingering mineral finish.

Varietal: 100% Chardonnay
Analysis:
13% alcohol / volume

Appellation: Premier Cru
Soil: Kimmeridgian marl & limestone
Vinification: Stainless steel tanks between 62.6-69.8°F
Aging: 12 months in stainless steel, on lees; then 4-5 years
Average Age of the Vines: 35 years
Yield: 58 hl/ha
Serving Temperature: 50-53.6°F

ABOUT THE VINEYARD:
This vineyard is situated on the left bank of the Serein river, and has an ideal southwesterly aspect. The soils of the left bank are less clay-like than those of the right bank. This wine is one of the most highly-rated left-bank Chablis from Maison Simonnet-Febvre.

ABOUT MAISON SIMONNET-FEBVRE:
Founded in 1840, Maison Simonnet-Febvre has become one of the oldest traditional Chablis wineries in the area. Originally named Febvre-Forgeot, after founder, Jean Febvre, married the daughter of a broker named Forgeot. In 1894, after the death of Jean Febvre, his daughter Melanie took over the company with her husband, Amedee Simonnet, and so, the company changed to benefit the person who would take the reins. Over the years, the winery continued to grow as it has been passed down from generation to generation. Learn more about their family winery here.

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November Premium Wine Club

Robert-Mondavi-Cab-FrancBold wine Style logoRobert Mondavi Winery
Oakville Cabernet Franc 2018
Napa Valley, California

BOLD WINE STYLE

The Oakville Cabernet Franc is a complex wine with notes of black currant, black plum, and unsweetened cocoa on the nose. On the palate, there are flavors of juicy blackberries, savory herbs and fresh tobacco. 

Analysis: 14.5% alcohol / volume
Varietal: 80% Cabernet Franc, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon
Appellation: Oakville District, Napa Valley, California
Food Pairing: Pair with robust meats and complex vegetables

HARVEST:
The grapes selected for the Oakville Cabernet Franc are grown on low fertility, well-drained soils with optimal sun exposure; this allows the winery to yield great fruit maturity and aromatics which Cabernet Franc is prized for.

ABOUT ROBERT MONDAVI WINERY:
Robert Mondavi built his winery in Northern California in 1966, planting Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and other key grape varieties to create some of the world’s finest wine. Today, Robert Mondavi Winery produces critically acclaimed, top-rated, world-class wines adored by industry experts, master sommeliers and consumers alike. Additionally, they are a Napa Green Certified winery and partnered with Napa County Resource Conservation District, creating the Napa Sustainable Winegrowing Group (NSWG). Learn more about the winery and their vineyards here.


Bold wine Style logobrowne-family-vineyards-cabernet-sauvignonBrowne Family Vineyards
Cabernet Sauvignon 2017
Columbia Valley, Washington

BOLD WINE STYLE

“Beautiful aromas of toasted oak with foxy grape and black fruit notes lead into flavors of dates, huckleberries and black cherries. Bold tannins stick to the palate leaving a lingering finish of licorice and berry compote. This full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon pairs perfectly with wild game like elk or venison and earthy wild mushrooms.” – Winemaker, John Freeman

Analysis: 14.91% alcohol / volume
Varietal: 96% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Petit Verdot
Appellation: Columbia Valley AVA
TA: 5.5 g/l
pH: 3.89
Aged: 21 months
Harvest Date: October 5th-November 1st, 2017

HARVEST:
The 2017 harvest was far more normal than the warmer and larger than average harvests from 2012-2016. A rainy spring led to a dry, warm summer, making for excellent fruit development in the Browne Family Vineyards. By the time of harvest, their fruit showed phenolic ripeness with balanced sugar, acids and tannins in the fruit skins. 

ABOUT BROWNE FAMILY VINEYARDS:
Browne Family Vineyards is a family-owned and operated winery located in the heart of Walla Walla, Washington and throughout the Columbia Valley AVA. Inspired by William Bitner Browne, the late grandfather of their proprietor, Andrew Browne, the winery continues to be committed to producing world-class wines with cellar-worthy vintages that stand the test of time. Learn more about the family winery and vineyard here.


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November Sweet Club Iowa

 

Sweet Wine Clubmeneres-rubyPorto Menéres
Porto Fine Ruby
Douro, Portugal

NECTAR WINE STYLE

The Porto Fine Ruby wine is rich and full bodied with notes of red fruit, such as plums and raspberry.

Analysis: 19.5% alcohol / volume
Varietal:
Touriga Franca, Tinta Roriz, Tinta Barroca, Tinto Cao
TA: 3.7 g/l
Residual Sugar: 100 g/l
pH: 3.79
VA: 0.4
Vintage: NV
Wine Type:
Ruby Port DOC
Origin:
Portugal
Appellation:
Douro, Portugal
Elaboration:
Handpicked in small bins. Stainless steel fermentation. Aged in large oak casks.
Production:
500 cases
Winemaker:
Alvaro Van Zeller

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.

HARVEST AND PRODUCTION:
Grapes are sourced for the company estates of Quinta do Saião (220 acres) and Quinta de Zom (200 acres). The grapes are hand cut, harvested in baskets and delivered to the Quinta to be sorted and crusted with the stems. Prior to fermentation, they are cold macerated for a full day, then fermented with native yeasts in open top stainless steel vats under temperature control until about half of the grapes’ nature sugar is consumed. The fermenting wine is drained off its skins and stems when it reaches about 100-120 g/l of residual sugar; it is then fortified with a fine, 150 proof grape brandy from Spain. After the harvest, the wine stays at the adega (or winery), in the Douro. Here, it is left to settle until the following spring before it is taken to the lodges at the Vila Nova de Gaia (next to the Atlantic coast and Porto) where it is matured, blended and bottled. The Menéres Ruby Port is a blend of selected young ports matured in large oak vats (or “tonels”) keeping a young fruit character.


Sweet Wine Clubmeneres-tawnyPorto Menéres
Porto Fine Tawny
Douro, Portugal

NECTAR WINE STYLE

Small oak barrel aging has lent the Porto Fine Tawny to have a softened mellow texture with an intense complex nose. This softness complements the raisiny fruity flavors.

Analysis: 19.5% alcohol / volume
Varietal:
Touriga Franca, Tinta Roriz, Tinta Barroca, Tinto Cao
TA: 3.5 g/l
Residual Sugar: 106 g/l
pH: 3.68
VA: 0.2
Vintage: NV
Wine Type:
Fine Tawny Port DOC
Origin:
Portugal
Appellation:
Douro, Portugal
Elaboration:
Handpicked in small bins. Stainless steel fermentation. Aged in large oak casks.
Production:
500 cases
Winemaker:
Alvaro Van Zeller
Critical Acclaims: 95 pts, Wine & Spirits

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

HARVEST AND PRODUCTION:
The Tawny Port follows the exact same harvest and production steps as the Menéres Ruby Port. The one key difference is that the Tawny Port is made of a selection of aged ports from small oak barrels, blended to obtain the house style before it is bottled.

ABOUT THE WINERY:
Fernando Van Zeller owns and operates both the largest and fastest growing independent Port companies in Portugal today. The family operated company comes from 14 uninterrupted generations in the Port trade, making them the longest continual run family in the region. The company in its current form was created when the family sold Quinta Do Noval in the 1990s, a transaction made to gain additional funds to expand the estate vineyard holdings and to maintain/expand the library stocks the Van Zeller family has long been associated with. During this sale, the Van Zeller family was able to hold onto thousands of barrels of aged wine, making them the deepest and most sought-after stocks of aged tawny in Portugal. Today, Menéres is one of the four Port brands this independent firm produces, named after their family ancestor, Arnaldo Menéres. The Menéres house specializes in 20 Year Tawny, 40 Year Tawny, and heirloom Colheitas. It is the highest quality line of Port that the Van Zeller family produces. The wines are classic in style, complex and true to character. 


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“Wine” not try our Sweet Club! 

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Estate Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon

Sourdough Stuffing with Sausage and Gruyère Recipe

Thanksgiving stuffing with sausage

INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 Tbsp. (½ stick) (2 oz./60 g) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 loaf sourdough bread, about 1 lb. (500 g), crust removed and cut into 1-inch (2.5-cm) cubes
  • 5 slices bacon, chopped
  • 1 lb. (500 g) pork breakfast sausage, casings removed
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 4 celery stalks, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 cups (24 fl. oz./750 ml) turkey or chicken stock
  • 1 cup (4 oz./125 g) grated Gruyère cheese
  • ¼ cup (1/4 oz./7 g) chopped fresh sage
  • 2 Tbs. fresh thyme leaves
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat an oven to 350°F (180°C). Using the melted butter, grease the bottom and sides of 9″x13″ (23cm x 33cm) baking dish.
  2. Spread the bread cubes on a baking sheet and toast in the oven until dried but not browned, about 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside. Leave the oven on.
  3. In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, cook the bacon until most of the fat is rendered but the bacon is not yet crisp, about 5 minutes. Add the sausage and cook, breaking up the meat into small pieces with a wooden spoon, until the meat is browned, about 10 minutes. Add the onion, celery and garlic and continue cooking until the vegetables are softened and translucent, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, lightly whisk the eggs. Add the stock and whisk until combined.
  5. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the sausage mixture to a very large bowl; discard any fat and liquid remaining in the pan. Add the bread cubes and cheese to the bowl and toss to combine. Add the stock mixture to the bowl and toss until the bread cubes are evenly moistened. Set aside for 10 minutes to allow the bread to absorb the liquid. Stir in the sage and thyme and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  6. Transfer the stuffing mixture to the prepared dish and bake until the stuffing is set and the top is golden brown and lightly crisped, about 40 minutes. Let rest 10 minutes before serving. Serves 10 to 12.

© Recipe courtesy of Williams Sonoma and Chris Lanier, co-founder and chef of Ravenwood, Kerhonkson, NY.

NOVEMBER WINE CLUB:

Bold wine Style logoEstate-Cellars-Cabernet (1)Estate Cellars
2019 Estate Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon

Central Coast, California

BOLD WINE STYLE

Cabernet Sauvignon is the king of red wines and at Clos LaChance there is no exception. Cabernet is the largest volume of acreage for a single varietal on their estate and made up of over six different clones on four different root stocks. The Estate Cabernet Sauvignon has always been a top performer for quality and the flag ship of the Clos LaChance portfolio.  They stay true to the style and the terroir on their Estate that presents an approachable and elegant style of Cabernet that is crafted for your everyday indulgence. The wine is ready to drink now and can be laid down for several years as well.

TASTING NOTES:
Dark Plum in color, the 2019 Estate Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon is full bodied with medium acid and high tannins. On the nose, there are flavors of cassis, tea leaf, and blackberry jam. On the palate, there are notes of cedar, huckleberry and molasses.

Varietal: 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot, 10% Malbec
Appellation: Central Coast, California
Analysis: 14% alcohol / volume

Aged: 16 months on 25% new French oak, 10% new American oak, 65% neutral French and American oak
Harvest Date: Oct. 2 – Oct. 31
Average Brix at Harvest: 25.0
pH: 3.61
TA: 0.62
Sugar: 0.13 g/L
Food Pairings: Braised Short Ribs, Vegetarian Lasagna
Cheese Pairings: Gruyére, or with the November Cheese Club selections.
Critical Acclaim: 95 pts. justwinepoints.com

 

 

California Certified Sustainable logoWINEMAKER NOTES:
The Cabernet Sauvignon is sourced from some of the finest vineyards throughout the Central Coast of California, ranging from San Francisco and Livermore in the north to Paso Robles in the south. The grapes are handpicked and hand sorted prior to a 72-hour cold soak at 40°F. During fermentation, the wine is pumped over four times per day during peak fermentation to maximize extraction. Post fermentation, the wine is held on skins for 24 hours to extend maceration and provide even more color and tannin extraction. The wine is then aged on 25% new French oak and 10% new American oak, and the remainder is aged on a mix of neutral American and French oak.

HARVEST NOTES:
The 2019 Estate Cellars’ Cabernet Sauvignon, similar to the previous two vintages, was notated as one of the latest starts to their season’s harvest. The winters have prolonged their growing seasons as the increasingly wet soils allow the vines time to mature at a healthy rate. The above average rainfall in the spring gave rise to a later than average bud break and bloom, which allowed the weather time to warm up and decrease any concerns of destructive frost. The summer temperatures were well below the seasonal average with only four days of 100+ degree temperatures (in previous years, they saw 11-16 days over 100 degrees). These even and mild temperature changes gave the winery an ideal growing season that pushed them well into November. They believe this hang time has shaped up to provide high quality wine and one of their best vintages to date.

Clos LaChance logoABOUT ESTATE CELLARS:
From the family owned and operated winery Clos LaChance, based in the Northern Central Coast region of California, Estate Cellars was established as their secondary, high-quality line made to reach additional markets with a unique label. Clos LaChance Winery and Estate Vineyard is proud to be Certified Sustainable by the California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance. The winery stays true to the style of their terroir by creating approachable and elegant wines. Learn more here.


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