Tony – ты мой мужчина! – Anya Balistreri
Category Archives: Anya Balistreri
Tony – ты мой мужчина! – Anya Balistreri
September? Have no fear, summer is not over. Not yet. It will be later this month, but let’s not let that put a damper on our spirits. There’s plenty to look forward to as fall approaches. Pigskin lovers are happy, the leaves will be changing, baseball will be turning into its serious phase, and the nights are getting longer. To accompany these changes, how about 12 wines, all different, for one low price? The September Dirty Dozen!
Click here to purchase the Dirty Dozen for $109.
2014 Ventoux Rosé l’Instant, Domaine de Fondrèche $16.29, $13.03 reorder
In the eastern section of the southern Rhône Valley, Sébastien Vincenti makes some fine wine in the Ventoux appellation. His Rosé l’Instant is another great example of a southern French Rosé made in the Provençal style. It’s sleek and crisp with hints of citrus and dried flowers. It’s a great food wine and will pair best with a seared ahi tuna salad Niçoise.
2013 Hors Saison, Domaine La Hitaire $13.99, $11.19 reorder
From the Côtes de Gascogne in southwest France comes this snappy little sipper inspired by the white blends from Bordeaux. 85% Sauvignon Blanc and a little Sémillon combine for a bright, fresh, citrus-like aromatic profile. The palate is light and the finish clean. A versatile table white, salads work well, especially those with goat cheese.
2012 Unoaked Chardonnay, The Winery of Good Hope $13.49, $10.79 reorder
Englishman Alex Dale grew up with wine, and in the 1990’s he invested in vineyards near Capetown, South Africa, and founded The Winery of Good Hope. No fancy label, no marketing, it’s all about the wine. 100% unoaked Chardonnay is what you get, no tricks, no makeup. The screwcap enclosure makes it great with picnics and chicken salad sandwiches.
2014 Entre-Deux-Mers, Tertre de Launay $11.98 net price, $10.78 reorder
The Greffier family has been making wine for over 6 generations and exporting Chateau Tertre de Launay to the US for nearly 40 years. We think they’ve got this thing down. A classic Bordelaise blend of Sauvignon Blanc, Sémillon, and Muscadelle goes into this intense, yet classy wine. Apart from shellfish, try it with grilled lemony-chicken.
2014 Xarel-lo, Bohigas $10.98 net price, $9.88 reorder
Bohigas, a family-run winery an hour north of Barcelona, can trace their history back to the 13th century. Today, father and daughter make a dry white from Xarel-lo, best known for being one of three grapes used for Cava. Zippy flavors of pineapple and white fruit are supported by a solid acid backbone. Try with salty snacks and tapas.
NV Gála Sec, Törley $11.98, $10.78 reorder
At the end of the 18th century, after working at Roederer and Delbeck in Reims, József Törley returned home to Hungary to make sparkling wine. His image is on the neck of every Törley bottle. The Gála Sec is indeed dry and made up of three varietals, Grüner Veltliner, Riesling, and Királyleányka. A Prosecco look-alike; it’s yummy with fried chicken.
2013 Poggio d’Elsa, Bruni $12.98 net price, $11.68 reorder
A 50/50 blend of Sangiovese and Cabernet Sauvignon, this hearty red from the wine region of Maremma, along Tuscany’s coastal flank, offers up ripe flavors of Morello cherries and black plums wrapped up in a smooth tannin finish. Beef brochettes topped with a pungent salsa verde would do nicely here, especially served outside on the terrazza.
2011 Minervois Cuvée Spéciale, Chateau de Paraza $11.98 net price, $10.78 reorder
After a period of neglect, the Danglas family has brought this historical estate back to its former glory. Along with renovation of the château, emphasis has been on elevating wine quality. The Cuvée Spéciale is a blend of 40% Syrah, 40% Grenache, and the rest Mourvèdre. Spicy, juicy, round and delicious! Try with flavors inspired by the Middle East.
2013 Santofimia, Niel $10.98 net price, $9.88 reorder
Black as night in the glass, this Garnacha Tintorera, aka Alicante Bouchet, is a bold, zesty Spanish red wine. The vines are 30 years of age on average and are grown at high altitudes in nutrient-poor soils. Blackberry liqueur and juicy cassis fruit flavors are backed up with formidable acidity. It’s a tooth-stainer! Try with bleu cheese topped grilled steak.
2013 Merlot, Domaine Saint Antoine $11.49, $9.19 reorder
We’ve been carrying the wines from Domaine Saint Antoine for well over a decade, one of the main reasons is for the price, they’re quite a deal! This Merlot is not to be taken lightly. It speaks of ripe cassis and cherries, tobacco and lavender. Tee up a rotisserie chicken, baked potatoes with parmesan cheese sprinkled on top, and asparagus. Yum.
2012 Syrah/Grenache, Grange des Rouquette $11.99, $9.59 reorder
You may have heard us extoll the virtues of Thierry Boudinaud and the panoply of wines he produces from in and around the southern Rhône. This Syrah/Grenache blend is all business; all tank-fermented, so it’s pure and fresh. What you get are aromas of red and purple berries, a medium-bodied palate and a bright finish. A great all-purpose table red.
2011 Costières de Nîmes Cuvée Trassegum, Château d’Or et de Gueules $22.99, $18.39 reorder
Cuvée Trassegum. In the local Occitan dialect it means “love potion,” and we are smitten. This is serious stuff here. Wine wizard Diane Puymorin blends 20% each Carignan and Mourvèdre (both from 80 year old vines) with Syrah and the result is spectacular. Get the fancy stemware out, grill up a nice grass-fed ribeye and share it with someone special!
I took the last vestiges of the 2010 Superiore home with me last night and finished it off with a baked breadcrumb-crusted fillet of sole topped with lemon slices. Delish! While savoring the last drops, my daughter gave a play by play description of her day at school with the Giants’ game droning on in the background. Turns out middle school is not as awful as she expected. I am keeping my fingers crossed, and saying a lot of prayers, that she continues to feel that way for the next three years. – Anya Balistreri
Ah, summertime. How kind of the calendar makers to give us back to back 31 day months in the middle of it! What to do in the month of August? Let’s look at France for inspiration; they take the month off! Well okay, most of us have to wake up and do what we have to do, but the DD can help make the dog days of summer more pleasurable. 12 wines, all chosen for their versatility, for one incredibly low price, The August Dirty Dozen!
Click here to purchase the Dirty Dozen for $109.
2014 Pays du Gard Rosé, Domaine Saint Antoine $11.49, $9.19 reorder
A perennial TWH favorite, the brand new 2014 Saint Antoine Rosé has arrived! The 2014 marked the umpteenth time we’ve carried a new vintage from this tried and true producer from the south of France. It’s one of our more full-bodied Rosé wines that boasts aromas of candied red fruit and chalky minerals. The screwcap makes it great for picnics.
2014 Costières de Nîmes, Les Cimels Blanc, Château d’Or et de Gueules $15.99, $12.79 reorder
Making its DD debut is a brand new wine for us, Les Cimels Blanc. Made by one of our favorite producers in the Rhône Valley, it’s a blend of Grenache Blanc (70%), Rolle (15%), and Roussanne (15%). It shows hints of pineapples and peaches with lively acidity and a medium body. Pair this with a grilled chicken breast with caramelized onions and gruyère.
2013 Côtes de Gascogne Les Tours, Domaine La Hitaire $9.99, $7.99 reorder
Ugni Blanc, Colombard, Gros Manseng … not exactly household names; blend them together 65-30-5% respectively, and you have one of our favorite easy quaffing, crisp white wines in the shop. All tank fermented, it’s fresh as a daisy with hints of Granny Smith apples and other orchard fruit. It’s great on its own, and even better with a scampi risotto.
2013 Montenovo Godello, Valdesil $14.98 net price, $13.48 reorder
After near extinction in the 1970’s, Godello is making a strong comeback in Spain. A family-run estate, Valdesil makes this one from their youngest vines grown on black slate. Citrus and under-ripe apple harken Chardonnay-like flavors, but the acid here is much more apparent. Grilled octopus, shrimp or scallops pair beautifully as would a shady nook.
2014 Verdicchio del Castelli di Jesi, Raphael $11.98 net price, $10.78 reorder
Verdicchio, an ancient Italian grape variety, thrives in the Marche region whose entire eastern edge borders the Adriatic Sea. Maurizio Marchetti works in collaboration with his grower neighbors to make this affordable, crisp and lively white. Notes of white flowers and saline give way to dried tropical fruit flavors. Match up with pesto or shellfish pastas.
2012 Cabirol Blanc, Dit Celler $14.98, $13.48 reorder
This Catalonian white comes from organic vines aged 35-60 years grown in limestone and clay at over 1500 ft. elevations. A 50/50 blend of Garnacha Blanca and Macabeu, on the nose there are aromas of pears and apricots and on the palate flavors of guava and bitter almonds. Try with zucchini fritters or heirloom tomato bruschetta out on the deck!
2013 Grenache VDP, Brunel $10.98 net price, $9.88 reorder
Brunel’s Grenache may be simple in its approach – vinified from 40 year old vines, aged and fermented in tank – but the resulting wine is not! Medium-bodied with ripe strawberry fruit lifted by scents of classic Provençal herbs like lavender and sage. Goes with just about anything, however ginger, garlic and soy-marinated chuck steak would work well here!
2013 BlauFranker Liter, Pfneisl $12.98 net price, $11.68 reorder
This Austrian Blaufränkisch comes from sisters, Birgit and Katrin Pfneisl, who also work with this grape in Hungary where it is known as Kékfrankos. Juicy, succulent and spicy, light in body like Gamay, but with plenty of freshness, this is an ideal summer red. Give it a slight chill, if you want, and pair with turkey burgers or Sheboygan Brats.
2013 Rosso Conero, Marchetti $12.98 net price, $11.68 reorder
Another wine from Marchetti (see Verdicchio above), his Rosso Conero is an elegant expression of the Montepulciano grape. Dark, smoky with deep ripe plum flavors, this red has some real chew on it! Take this wine to enjoy al fresco – it’ll stand up to your boldest bbq/grill food favorites. May we suggest a spice-rubbed T-Bone or smoky pork and beans.
2012 Côtes du Rhône Mataró, Vignobles Boudinaud $17.99, $15.28 reorder
And along comes a Côtes du Rhône made from 100% Mourvèdre, or Mataró as its locally known in Catalonia and along the southern French Mediterranean coast. It’s medium-full bodied with a gamey presence and rounded edges. As we get caught up with plating sizzling steaks and chops from off the grill, Boudinaud’s Mataró should pair perfectly with them.
2012 Barco Reale di Carmignano, Le Farnete $14.59, $11.67 reorder
Toning things down a bit is a versatile little number from Tuscany. Longtime TWH producer Enrico Pierazzuoli blends 80% Sangiovese with 20% Cabernet Sauvignon to give us his Barco Reale. The result is zippy and high-toned with layers of red fruits and herbs. What to pair with it? Easy answers: Pasta with red sauce, pizza, or grilled mild Italian sausages.
2011 Crozes-Hermitage Les Pierrelles, Domaine Belle 375ml $13.49, $10.79 reorder
Whoa! Crozes-Hermitage in the Dirty Dozen?!! Okay, it is in half bottle, which is perfect when looking for just a glass or two to share, and Crozes-Hermitage sure deserves to be shared! Pure Syrah fruit and that rocky Crozes mineral give the wine its name, Les Pierelles, or the little stones. Serve it with that low-and-slow smoked brisket.
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