November 2010 Dirty Dozen

Days are getting shorter, soon it will be dark before 6 PM, and by the end of this month, we will be entering the “home stretch” of 2010! Then, there’s this holiday that happens every year on the fourth Thursday of November. Many of you ask for pairing advice for Thanksgiving fare, and though it is difficult, we offer several suggestions below. Versatility is the key. Stop on by and pick up your DD today!

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2009 Cotes de Gascogne, Domaine de Bidalere – $9.48 net, $8.53 reorder
Meanwhile down in Southwestern France, there has been a resurgence of crisp white wines hitting our shores and shelves. This recent release from a property once known as “Domaine de Pellehaut” is bright, crisp, and hits all the right sensors. It sees no malo, so its natural acidity makes it great with a plethora of cuisine. We say try it with calamari.

2009 Rioja Blanco, ‘Vina Tobia’, Bodegas Tobia – $10.98 net, $9.88 reorder
Rioja means value. Most know the red kind. Well, the serious wine connoisseur knows that White Rioja is every bit, if not a better deal! Round on entry, the mouthfeel of this wine is exquisite; an orchard of white fruit, a hint of tropical fruit blossom, all held together by a mineral depth and balancing acidity. Here’s one for those fish tacos.

2009 Chardonnay, Rutherford, MSH Cellars – $9.98 net, $12.98 reorder
One of the things we do, and are very proud to do, is find those “hidden” wines that you won’t read about in those wine periodicals. Because their respective labels aren’t paraded about “Recommended Values” pages, they remain very fair priced, yet offer astounding quality. Here’s one of our latest discoveries! Rutherford fruit. Pair it with crab season!

2009 Domaine de la Petit Cassagne Blanc – $11.99, $9.59 reorder
Drink any White Rhone wines lately? Seriously, these wines offer a ton of complexity, pairing possibility, and overall yumminess. This one tips the scales in the quality for price department. A roast chicken with herbes de Provence; oui!

2008 Vouvray, ‘les Coudraies’, Domaine d’Orfeuilles – $17.49, $13.99 reorder
The Thanksgiving Day table is one of the most difficult to pair wine with. You need something that has depth, richness, and lively acidity to pair with all those dishes. This demi-sec Vouvray has got all of that and an extra dimension. The hint of sweetness combines with the vibrant acidity that complements and contrasts the various dishes. Gobble gobble!

2009 ‘Les Tours’, Domaine la Hitaire – $9.99, $7.99 reorder
Back for another go around is one of our favorite crisp whites from Gascogne. Like the Bidalere above, this is comprised of Ugni Blanc, Colombard, and Gros Manseng. What’s that? Goodness. In a glass. It is a great cocktail wine. A Chef we know likes to quaff this one while working away in a warm kitchen. Just saying, it’s a good idea.

2009 Tempranillo, La Mancha, Casa Gualda – $9.98 net, $8.98 reorder
More value from Spain here. A friendly red for a very friendly price. Think plumy purple fruit on the nose, some tobacco notes; on the palate you have all that combined with sweet tannins and a lively finish. This is a very versatile red wine.

2008 Dao, Colheita Seleccionada, Cabriz – $11.98 net, $10.78 reorder
Speaking of versatility, this medium-weight red from Portugal is a blend of the signature Touriga Nacional, Tinta Roriz, and Alfrocheiro. It has a strong herbal profile which will enable it to be easily liked at the Turkey Day table.

2006 Tradicional, Quinta do Alqueve – $11.99, $9.59 reorder
Mais do Portugal! Versatility is the key to the Dirty Dozen every month, but this month we’re pulling out all the stops. Alqueve’s Tradicional is another blend featuring Touriga and Tinta Roriz, only it sees a little barrel action which gives it a bolder texture and complexity. All in all, this one works with pizza and pasta, and spare ribs, and even turkey & gravy.

2009 Evodia, Old Vines Garnacha, Altovinum – $9.98 net, $8.98 reorder
10 bucks for a wine that comes from a vineyard that has some vines that are over 100 years old??? Yep, that’s what we have here, folks. Spicy black cherries dominate the aromatics; zesty dark fruit on the palate, definitely not sweet, yet it shows ample fruit and spice with zippy acidity. It is suitable for hearty fare; autumn stews or prime rib.

2006 Zinfandel, Fritz Vineyards – $13.98 net, $12.58 reorder
Dry Creek Valley Zin for a very fair price. That being said, this wine shows amazing restraint for what it is. Definitely New World in style, it is a great example of a Zinfandel that is not made to wipe out palates and sobriety. The restraint allows for more complexity and that is ever-present when served along side a pizza with black olives.

2004 Chateau Mont Perat – $14.98 net, $13.48 reorder
Right now, this is the best deal in the house. We spotted this incredible Bordeaux on a closeout list recently, and after writing it off as a typo, we inquired. It wasn’t a typo. We’ve made many a customer happy with this one. It is true Bordeaux … for a song. Pair it with anything you would pair with a Red Bordeaux. Anything. Really. Don’t miss out!

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Filed under Peter Zavialoff, The Dirty Dozen, Wine Clubs/Samplers

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