It starts around mid-October. “I hear that you have an annual sale in the fall, are you having one this year?” “Will there be any Bordeaux on sale this year?” “Are you going to send out an email when your sale starts?” – All questions we hear every year. Once the sale gets going, the time flies by. The relevant question we hear regularly is, “How long does your sale go on for?” In early November, the end of the year still seems far away. Well, today being Boxing Day and all, it’s not far away; not at all. Our 38th Anniversary Sale is coming to an end. So if you haven’t loaded up on case special Rosé, or picked out a few special bottles of Bordeaux or Burgundy for posterity, time’s running out. The good news is: There are containers on the water and first David, and then I will be traveling to France in Q1 2016. David will be headed to Burgundy among other places, and I will be in Bordeaux to taste barrel samples of the exciting 2015 vintage. Of course, the focus of the annual trip is the new vintage and the many barrel samples, but I taste much more while there. This past April, I got my first taste of the 2014 Château Puy-Servain Montravel Blanc and for the price, it’s tough to beat.
Daniel Hecquet is a friend of The Wine House SF. He has visited us numerous times over the years, and I’ve made a point of visiting him and his wife Catherine each spring. I might have mentioned him a time or two. He is very passionate about his vines and his wines. In fact, he once visited us and told a story about one of his wines that moved a member of our staff to tears upon hearing it. He makes several different wines including a Rosé, and though I have the opportunity to taste them all, I try to focus my concentration on the wines we bring in each year; the wines our customers know and love. For the whites, I always start with his Château Calabre Montravel Blanc. Unpretentious, with screw-cap to prove it, it’s a great “pop and pour” wine. I should know, I had a glass when I finally made it home last night after a much travelled Xmas Day. It’s a great entry-level white that’s right up there with our Gavi as far as $10 whites go. The Puy-Servain Montravel Blanc is always up next, and my usual perception is that it is a more serious wine. It’s more expensive, but that proves nothing. Just like the Gavi has its more serious side, the Gavi di Gavi Rovereto, the Puy-Servain Blanc is well worth the additional expenditure. Especially with the 2014!
It’s fresh and invigorating in its aromas. Citrusy orange peel notes drift from the glass with a hint of a floral essence. The palate is fresh and lively held nicely together with lighthearted balance. The word “clean” appears in my notes three times, including the note about the finish. Hecquet blends 50% Sauvignon Gris with Sauvignon Blanc to give a little fullness to the mouth feel. All in all, it’s a very well made wine, and as written above, it rivals the Gavi di Gavi Rovereto as to our most serious sub $15 white wine. As a matter of fact, with the very favorable currency exchange rate we had when this wine was purchased, it’s become the price/quality leader! Check out that case discount.
So yes, Xmas 2015 was full of great moments for me. Great people, great food (except for my brother’s tri-tip – he overcooks meat), and a very nice surprise. A 1986 Pessac-Léognan Rouge that shined brightly paired with a perfectly cooked beef tenderloin later that evening. Wishing you all good health, success, and happiness in the upcoming New Year! – Peter Zavialoff
Please feel free to email me with any questions or comments about the 2014 Château Puy-Servain Montravel Blanc, sub $15 white wines, English Football, or Bordeaux: peter@wineSF.com