Stuff occasionally (actually way more than occasionally) gets swept under the rug over here at saignée because we really don’t feel like blogging everyday. But since i’ve been more excited about wines than i have been in the past few months, i’ll go ahead and share some with you.
2007 Angiolino Maule Sassaia: i don’t know how to pronounce this name, but no matter what this is the real sans-soufre supernatural deal (Eric Texier even tested this). Recently brought out of a cold cellar where it was placed to stabilize after initially coming out of the bottle a bit angry. A blend of garganega (best grape name ever) and trebbiano from Gambellara in the Veneto, this was the best bottle i’ve yet had from this producer.
2006 Jean-Marie Fourrier Gevrey-Chambertin Vielles-Vignes: I don’t even know why i mess with burgundy that has no stems anymore when wine like this is around (well i can’t afford any burgundy really, so the distinction is not really important). Old school, high acid, lots of stems, beautiful stuff.
2007 Francois Cazin Cour-Cherverny: Someone was telling me that the Touraine AOC was thinking of limiting the white grape varieties to sauvignon blanc in some sort of collosally misguided attempt at branding against New Zealand. Thank the lord that some growers like Francois still appreciate their heritage and make wines out of grapes like romorantin. Track some down because i guarantee it’s better than sauvignon blanc.
i was lucky enough to try all three cuvees from the great classic house, Montevertine in Tuscany over the past two weeks, thanks to Dagan Ministero. If you don’t know Montevertine, they are one of the most famous producers of IGT wines in Italy. Formerly an accepted DOCG producer, Montevertine broke from the region designation when Sergio Manetti, the vigneron at the time, decided that allowing growers to add white wine wine grapes to chianti was bastardizing the wines so he protested by accepting the lesser designation. While the rule allowing white wine (trebbiano and malvasia bianco) has since been rescinded, he (and his son Martino, who took over upon his father’s death) stuck to their guns to further protest the cheapening of Italian wine tradition. The estate makes all the reds from the traditional varieties sangiovese, colorino, and canaiolo. They have also forcefully resisted planting French varieties as others have done, famously saying “I find the use of these grapes shameful – write that down – because it implies that Sangiovese by itself isn’t good – that it needs help. That’s absurd! You don’t see the producers in Bordeaux looking elsewhere for grapes to improve their wines, and we don’t need to either. Sangiovese is second to none. Those who add these complementary grapes are distorting the image of Chianti, producing something that doesn’t reflect the heritage of our land. I’ll never use them. Never.” Good words.
2004 Montevertine di Montevertine and 2004 Montevertine “La Pergole Torte” were opened back to back to check in on them. Great year from one of my favorite old school producers, but definitely young. Do most people even know what real Chianti is supposed to taste like? If i had thes wines with a bit more with some osso buco as my last meal i would be content.
2006 Pian del Ciampolo: i visited what is now my favorite San Francisco restaurant, La Ciccia with Jake Skakun, where we drank (of course) a bottle of Dettori Bianco (which i have written about before HERE) and a bottle of Montevertine’s entry level bottling a 2006 “Pian del Ciampolo.” Where the other two wines are sprawling massive tuscan villas in terms of structure, this is a trattoria in a basment. Made all the better because Massimiliano and Lorella have made their restaurant just the type of place to open such a warm, inviting bottle.
2000 Chateau Rayas: i’ve been looking forward to finally trying a bottle of this. Opened with an international all star cast of customers from Spain, France, Canada, The Jersey Shore, and Baltimore. Evolved over an several hours into stunning Rhone wine. Like Guilhaume said “this is something diferent than Grenache. i agree.” In the meantime, while the bottle was opening up, we had a 2004 Rollin Pernand-Vergelesses 1er Cru “sous-fretille” and a 2006 Domaine Henri Gouges Nuits St. Georges 1er Cru Clos De Porrets Blanc. This was all sparked by a converstion about pinot blanc, which i dig in my white Burgs. The Rollin showed exceptionally well, the Gouges was youngyoungyoung.
And finally, PX from Michel Couvreur. Trying to wrap my head around this one. Razor’s edge balance on a thick wine. Need to track down more.
Question of the post: What are your thoughts on hops in beer? I’ve been noticing that a lot of producers overuse them to the point of distraction, like oak in wine.