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Highlights from this month’s newsletter…
by Anthony Lynch
2012 CÔTES DU RHÔNE BLANC
BLENDED BY KERMIT LYNCH
Our house Côtes-du-Rhône blanc continues to epitomize the category, and with class. Composed of Roussanne, Marsanne, and a dash of Clairette, the Sunflower cuvée conveys a luring perfume of apricot with a nectar-like trace of honey. These aromas warmly invite you in before the wine smoothly glides over your palate, flaunting a ravishing texture. An outlier from the land of big reds, this fine dry white is not to be missed. It is a Louis Barruol/Kermit Lynch collaboration.
$22.00 per bottle $237.60 per case
2012 LE PIGEOULET ROUGE • VIGNOBLES BRUNIER
The Brunier bothers are known for their Vieux Télégraphe label, but this is the wine of theirs that I want to drink every day. This Grenache-dominated blend is the quintessential Southern red, marked by ample sunshine and the heavenly aromas that make a walk through the Provençal countryside a magical experience: lavender, rosemary, thyme, and sun-ripened wild blackberries. In 2012 the Pigeoulet is especially elegant, with tannins that are present but perfectly integrated into the supple, grapey fruit.
$18.00 per bottle $194.40 per case
by Anthony Lynch
2012 CHARDONNAY • ÉRIC CHEVALIER
Éric Chevalier trained at a domaine in Chablis before returning to run his family’s estate in the Loire. Perhaps that is why the Chardonnay he makes is always so crisp and taut. Vinified without any oak, it reminds me of a baby Chablis thanks to its liveliness and its bouquet of white flowers and fresh fruit. Like each of Éric’s wines, it’s a total steal.
$14.95 per bottle $161.46 per case
The vines of Éric Chevalier © Julia Issleib
2012 FIÉ GRIS • ÉRIC CHEVALIER
I’m a sucker for tasting unfamiliar and obscure grape varieties. Petit Courbu? Sure. Zierfandler? Bring it on. Fié Gris—which formerly thrived along France’s Atlantic coast before being largely replaced by its grassier and higher-yielding cousin, Sauvignon Blanc—represents another bizarre, rarely grown grape that is a must-try for any curious wine lover. Fié Gris is characterized by the zippy acidity that is typical in whites from this part of the Loire Valley. However, it brings an aromatic bouquet that is unlike any you have ever tasted: a hint of exotic fruit, wet stone, and what is unmistakably a note of jalapeño pepper. I recommend one bottle to get acclimated and a second to get creative in the kitchen.
$24.00 per bottle $259.20 per case