La Clarine Farm Cedarville Mourvèdre is back, and more!

We’ve just added three more incredible wines to our online shop, two of which have no added sulfites. They pair perfectly with seasonal ingredients such as pomegranate, roasted poultry, winter squash, persimmon, and chicories. Click the links to purchase from our online store.

La Clarine Farm Cedarville Mourvedre2013 La Clarine Farm “Cedarville” Mourvèdre – $28
La Clarine Farm’s Cedarville Mourvèdre is back and better than ever! Bright, fresh, exotic, and supple, it’s a seductive wine that will entice the most jaded palates. Notes of fresh guava, herbs, cranberry, and minerals are the highlights of this incredible, terroir-driven wine from the Sierra Foothills.

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2013 Christian Vernier ‘Les Hauts de Madon’ Cheverny Rouge – $25
An organically farmed, no-sulfur-added blend of Pinot Noir & Gamay from the Loire Valley’s Cheverny region. This super sexy and feminine wine is remarkably fresh, high-toned, delicately structured, and super juicy. It’s full of aromas of fresh red fruit, dusty earth, fresh herbs, and minerals. I can’t get enough of this wine, it’s definitely one of my top 5 picks for 2014. A must-have for those who love Loire reds and Pinot Noir.

Vinavanti Viognier2013 Vinavanti Viognier, San Diego County – $23
An incredible no-sulfur-added Viognier from San Diego County (you heard right). Sustainably farmed fruit is sourced locally and made into this great wine by Vinavanti. They produce their wines without any additives or oak, and ferment them whole-cluster. This voluptuous and fresh wine will entice you with it’s aromas of citrus, pear skin, herbs, and minerals. It’s a perfect pairing for roasted turkey or chicken.

Join the wine club today and receive 10% off your order with a coupon code that will be emailed to you after you join! We’re shipping the Fall wine club next week. Check out the selections here. Supplies are extremely limited (in fact we’re telling people we’re sold out, but we might have a couple of extras to go around).

Do you have questions or would you like some personal assistance selecting wines to suit your taste? Reach out to Tala directly by email – tala@winelandia.com.

Cheers!
Winelandia

Wine of the Week: Celler Frisach Vernatxa Blanca, Terra Alta

Like most wine geeks, I go through phases. Right now, that phase is white wines from Spain. As many of you know, we’re working with a new importer of Catalan wines (read all about him here) who’s focus is terroir-driven, full-flavored, natural wines grown at high elevations. He has a surprising number of incredible white wines from this region – something entirely new to me. I’m completely captivated by them – intensely mineral, textural, and unlike anything else. This week’s Wine of the Week is my favorite yet – Celler Frisach Vernatxa Blanca.

Celler Frisach is a very small, family-run operation out of Tarragona. It’s 100% Grenache Blanc, grown in soils that are essentially petrified sand dunes, at 1200′ elevation. Fermented on the skins for 14 days like a red wine, it’s technically an “orange” wine, but you’d never know it unless I told you. Pale in color, rich in texture, with incredible minerality that’s hard to find in wines at this price point. I imagine this wine on your fall dinner table, because it’s robust enough to pair with rich fall fare. Winter squash, roasted game birds, hearty salads, and cheese plates will all shine with this beauty of a wine.

Buy now on Winelandia.com!

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Blend: 100% Garnatxa Blanca
Region: Spain>Catalunya>Terra Alta
Vineyard: Organically farmed 24 year old vines in petrified sand dune at 1200′ elevation.
Tasting Notes: A captivating, intensely mineral, full-bodied white wine with superb balance. Textural and complex with flavors of citrus and a hint of summer fruit, with a persistent mineral backbone.
Food Pairing: Marcona almonds, hard Iberian cheeses, olives, tortilla española
Production Notes: Fermented with indigenous yeasts on the skins in stainless steel for 14 days until dry.  Aged 6 months in French oak. Bottled with minimal SO2. 
Winemaker: Francesc Ferre
Bio: Ferre’s family has been farming organic grapes in the region for 200 years, but only since 2009 has the family made wine, when 21 year old Francesc took over operations. Their high elevation and unique climate with warm days and cool nights is perfect for growing pretty, fresh garnatxa.

Buy now on Winelandia.com!

Fall sale this weekend! 10%-20% off select wines

Our Fall sale is happening this weekend, Thursday Oct. 16th through Sunday October 19th! Save 10%-20% on select red & orange wines, including several wines with no added sulfites.

Roark 2012 Malbec Santa Ynez Valley
Juicy, fresh, exuberant Malbec from the Central Coast.
Regular Price: $28.00
SALE PRICE: $23.80

Grosjean 2012 Pinot Noir, Vallee d’Aoste
Elegant, delicate, restrained Pinot Noir from northern Italy.
Regular Price: $28.00
SALE PRICE: $23.80

Rafa Bernabé 2011 “El Morron” Garnacha, Alicante
Light-bodied, with minerals and pretty fruit from southern Spain. No added sulfites.
Regular Price: $25.00
SALE PRICE: $21.25

Adega Vella 2011 Mencía, Ribeira Sacra
Soft, supple, and stony, with juicy red fruit from the western side of Spain.
Regular Price: $15.00
SALE PRICE: $13.50

Celler Acústic 2010 Red Blend
A bold, spicy blend of garnatxa (grenache) & samso (carignan) from Spain’s Montsant region.
Regular Price: $24.00
SALE PRICE: $19.20

Andréa Calek 2011 “Babiole” Red Blend, Ardèche
An intense, earthy, and bold red wine from France’s famed Rhone Valley. No added sulfites.
Regular Price: $28.00
SALE PRICE: $22.95

Château Tire Pé 2012 “Diem” Bordeaux
The purest expression of Merlot, aged in concrete tanks. Certified organic.
Regular Price: $15.00
SALE PRICE: $13.50

Rafa Bernabé 2012 “Benimaquia” Moscatel, Alicanté
An intensely floral, structured, and profound skin-fermented white (orange) wine from southern Spain, aged in amphora. No added sulfites.
Regular Price: $23
SALE PRICE: $19.55

Introducing our Fall ’14 Wine Club Offer

**Our Fall wine club selections are SOLD OUT! You can still join the wine club and have a custom six-pack assembled, or you can just shop in our online store with you 10% off wine club discount. Just fill out the form at https://club.winelandia.com**

Can you believe Winelandia released its first wine club offer a year ago? Time flies when you’re having fun! 12 months of networking, tasting, and establishing relationships with great suppliers, importers, and wineries has enabled us to put together our most diverse wine club offer ever, and we’re so excited to share it with you today!

We’ve brought in 12 great wines from the US, Spain, Italy, and France to grace your fall tables. We have a little something for everyone! Below are our three wine club collections, and supplies are very limited. Get in on the action and sign up for the Winelandia seasonal wine club today!

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Mixed Wine Club:
$142 + tax & delivery
Broc Cellars 2013 Vine Starr Zinfandel, Sonoma County, US
Cantine del Indie 2013 “Vini Rosso del Popolo”, Langhe, Italy
Succés Vinícola 2012 “El Mentider” Trepat, Conca de Barberà, Spain
Frantz Saumon NV “La Petite Gaule du Matin” Pétillant, Loire Valley, France
Ryme Cellars 2013 “Hers” Vermentino, Carneros, US
Alexandre Bain 2012 Pouilly-Fumé, Loire Valley, France

Red Wine Club:
$129 + tax & delivery
Broc Cellars 2013 Vine Starr Zinfandel, Sonoma County, US
Cantine del Indie 2013 “Vini Rosso del Popolo”, Langhe, Italy
Succés Vinícola 2012 “El Mentider” Trepat, Conca de Barberà, Spain
Mas des Agrunelles 2010 “L’Indigene” Red Blend, Languedoc, France
Foradori 2011 Teroldego, Trentino-Alto Adige, Italy
Chateau Flotis 2010 “Si Noire” Fronton, South West France

White Wine Club:
$134 + tax & delivery
Frantz Saumon NV “La Petite Gaule du Matin” Pétillant, Loire Valley, France
Ryme Cellars 2013 “Hers” Vermentino, Carneros, US
Alexandre Bain 2012 Pouilly-Fumé, Loire Valley, France
Celler Frisach 2012 Selecció Garnatxa Blanca, Terra Alta, Spain
Domaine Belluard 2012 “Les Alpes” Gringet, Savoie, France
Sulauze 2013 “Pomponette” Rosé, Provence, France

As always, we’ll update this post when the wine club sells out.

Kick-Ass Organic Spanish Wines Taking San Francisco By Storm

Many wine consumers do not fully understand or appreciate the role of the importer when it comes to imported wine. Sure, you’ve all heard the name Kermit Lynch, or maybe even Louis/Dressner. Whomever is listed on the back of the bottle is the person or entity who went to the French countryside or coastal Catalan vineyard to find these incredible wines to share with American consumers. They are the taste-makers, the ones connecting with the farmers and winemakers, sampling each barrel, and grasping at handfuls of rocky soil to better understand the mysterious elixir inside of the bottle. These are the people and entities putting these wines into containers and on to a ship, directly from the wineries on the other side of the world. They then sell these wines to retailers, distributors, and in some cases, directly to the consumer.

I’ve run into San Francisco-based importer Andrew Yandell on several occasions over the past few months – a passionate, young importer of organic Spanish & Catalan wines. His friendly, dimpled smile makes him quite conspicuous. Yandell recently started his own import label, Trumpet Wine, and has been canvassing the local wine shops and restaurants to peddle his wares.

Yandell primarily imports wines from Catalonia, an autonomous community flanking the Mediterranean sea on the eastern border of Spain. Catalan culture is rich with wine-making history, including rare, indigenous grape varieties, and high elevation ocean-side vineyards. This seaside nation is most famous for Cava, a sparkling wine made from indigenous Spanish grape varieties such as Macabeu and Xarel-lo.

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So how did this local guy get into the business of importing Catalan wine? I had to know, and so I met with Andrew over coffee to hear his story.

Trumpet+Winelandia(left: me, right: Andrew Yandell)

When Yandell was 13 years old, his family lived in Barcelona for a year, where he began to develop a taste for local flavors. He spent the next decade going back in forth between SF and Barcelona, maintaining friendships, expanding his network, and exploring his palate. He studied art history abroad for a year at the Complutense de Madrid to nail his Spanish down, and decided that one day, he would import Spanish wine. Yandell spent summers cooking and learning in German wine country while he finished school, and wrote his thesis in finance on applying weather derivatives to protect Champagne growers from poor harvests. After a brief stint working for a high-profile dot-com straight out of school, he decided to listen to his heart and ended up at Bi-Rite Market selling wine. Nine months later, he left to start his import label, Trumpet Wine.

Recently, I was fortunate to have the opportunity to taste through much of Yandell’s portfolio. It didn’t take me long to realize that he was doing something very special. Yandell’s selections showcase full-flavored, structured, balanced, clean, terroir-driven wines that are organically or Biodynamically farmed, with minimal intervention in the bodega. He feels that some natural wines can be too austere for a broad audience, and seeks out examples that are cleaner and more accessible. All of the love without any of the funk! Trumpet’s wines are an insane value, as well – wines of this quality from other parts of the world easily cost double what these do.

I picked up several of Trumpet’s wines, some of which can be found in the Winelandia online shop, and another that’s only available to the wine club. You can also find his wines at restaurants all over San Francisco.

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Celler Frisach 2013 “Selecció” Garnatxa Blanca, Terra Alta – $14
Remember when I said that Spanish wines were an incredible value? This high-altitude Garnatxa Blanca is a far cry from the bland, oily GBs we’re used to. Textural, fresh, structured, mineral, and elegant. I would easily pay $25 for this wine, so you all should buy it up at $14 before I drink it all.

oct-6

Mas Candí 2013 “Desig” Xarel-lo, Penedès – $18
Xarel-lo is one of the primary grapes used in Cava blends, but it lends itself very well to a varietal wine. It’s intensely mineral, with a stony quality that echoes the calcareous soil it’s grown in. A day on the skins lends the wine some elegant structure, and makes it an absolute pleasure to drink. I’ll take my Xarel-lo still, not sparkling, please!

oct-4

Succés Vinícola “Cuca de Llum” Trepat, Conca de Barberà – $18
Trep-what? Trepat. A red grape indigenous to Spain, traditionally used in Cava blends. The winemakers found that this misunderstood red grape makes a lovely, aromatic red wine, not just rosé. Yandell sees similarities between it and young Beaujolais, which I can totally appreciate. Fresh, bright, and floral, with a delicate herbal quality and just a little bit of baby fat.

In addition to these wines, I just ordered a case of Biodynamic Cava that’s going to retail for around $17 – keep an eye out for that! In the meantime, let’s all thank Trumpet Wine for bringing affordable, accessible, natural wine from Spain to our homes and tables.

Wine of the Week: Foradori 2011 Teroldego, Trentino-Alto Adige

It’s no secret, Italian wines are fantastic. The wines of Trentino-Alto Adige in northern Italy are by far some of our favorites. Bordered by Austria and Switzerland, it’s an extremely mountainous region that lies within the Dolomites and southern Alps. There are many intriguing grape varieties grown in this unique alpine climate, such as Teroldego, Lagrein, and Müller-Thurgau. The high elevations, rocky soil, warm summers, and cold, snowy winters produce wines that are intensely aromatic and fresh.

Now that fall has arrived, so has a place on our dinner table for full-bodied red wines. This lovely red is from Elisabetta Foradori, who began converting her estate to Biodynamic farming in the year 2000. It’s made from 100% Teroldego, and it’s her flagship wine. Dark in color and intense, it’s full of fresh black fruit flavors peppered with minty herbal notes. On the palate, it’s surprisingly soft and supple, with fresh acidity and minerality. If you love full-bodied red wines, give this one a shot. It’s showing beautifully now and will age gracefully for years to come.

Buy now on Winelandia.com

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Blend: 100% Teroldego
Region: Italy>Trentino-Alto Adige>Vigneti Delle Dolomiti
Vineyard: Certified Biodynamic. South-facing vineyard with alluvial, sandy, stony soil.
Tasting Notes: A striking, inky red wine with aromas of fresh black fruit, mint, and spice.  On the palate, the wine is silky, soft, and polished, with excellent length, texture, juicy acidity, and saline minerality. An unbelievable wine at an incredible price.
Food Pairing: Filet mignon with roasted mushrooms, smoked sausages, salumi
Production Notes: Hand-harvested fruit is fermented with indigenous yeasts in open top tanks. Aged for 15 months in a blend of neutral botte and stainless steel tanks.
Winemaker: Elisabetta Foradori
Bio: Elisabetta Foradori lives at her estate in Northern Italy, near the Austrian border. Originally established by her grandfather, the estate was later taken over by her father who died very young. Being the only child, Elisabetta took over the winery’s operations at the age of 20. She farms 18 hectares of primarily Teroldego, a red grape variety indigenous to the area. In the year 2000, Elisabetta began converting the estate to certified organic and Biodynamic.

Buy now on Winelandia.com