Pairings for August 26 at Cure Organic Farm:
Domaine Thevenet et Fils, Blanc de Blancs Vin Mousseux de Qualite Brut, Burgundy, France $39
A family run winery, Domaine Thevenet et Fils is centered in the village of Pierreclos at the heart of the Macconais. Jean Claude Thevenet inherited the family domaine, a mere 3 hectares, in 1971 and grew it to its current 30 hectare holdings. Importer Neil Rosenthal has worked with the family since 1982 and has seen consistently impressive quality and purity throughout the years. In 2008, Jean Claude passed away, unfortunately at the early age of 54, but his wife and three sons continue to uphold his legacy.
Often many consumers think of sparkling wine from France as only coming from Champagne, however, there are many delicious well-crafted sparkling wines from other well respected appellations in France. Domaine Thevenet’s Blanc de Blancs is 100% Chardonnay crafted from 20 year old vine harvested from parcels in the village of Serrieres on the border with Pierreclos. The vineyards are west facing and planted to sandy soils.
A delicious, expressive, dry Chardonnay, the Blanc de Blancs possesses an attractive honeyed note for added richness but overall is a gorgeously fresh, sparkling Chardonnay presented in a light-bodied, delicate format.
2016 Smockshop Band, White Zinfandel 'Spring Ephemeral', Columbia Valley, Oregon $45
It was nine years ago that China Tresemer, Nate Ready, and I bought a school bus on eBay. We named her ‘Bella’, converted her into a kitchen, and set her beside the rows of crops at Cure Organic Farm for our first Meadow Lark Farm Dinner.
After our first season together, Nate and China moved to Oregon. Their goal was to find a patch of land and continue to explore the ways in which food and wine can draw connections between people and place. Several years of hard work have now come to fruition: Hiyu, a ‘wine farm’ that is home to a tightly-knit community of people working toward a shared goal, as well as to Guinea hogs and Dexter cows that graze among the vines.
In their own words: “We believe in connecting people to the land. Guided by nature and inspired by ideas from biodynamic farming and permaculture, we care for 30 acres of hillside in the Hood River Valley. We tend vines, raise animals, garden, cook and make wine to reveal an experience of place.”
—Veronica Volny of Meadow Lark
From a 2.5 acre block of Zinfandel, propagated with pre-prohibition cuttings from “The Pines” in the Dalles. This was picked early November from Zinfandel grown at Scorched Earth Vineyard. Like all the fruit from this year the aromas was literally spilling out of the bins as it was picked. One lot was pressed directly while the other two saw two to four days of skin contact respectively. The wine was basket pressed into older barrels where it fermented and aged for six months prior to bottling.
This is a fresh, vibrant and yet still textural Rosé. It’s unusually complex and salty for this sort of wine and finishes with very clear aromatics of dried herbs and pepper.
2014 Ferdinand Albarino Luna Vista Vineyard, Borden Ranch AVA, Lodi, California $32
Evan Frazier started the Ferdinand label in 2010 with just 56 cases of Albariño. Introduced to winemaking in 2006 by Abe Schoener of the Scholium Project, that year Evan worked his first harvest, in the Roussillon (Maury, France), with ancient Carignan and Grenache vines. Ferdinand is made in the Kongsgaard cellar on Atlas Peak (Napa, CA) where Evan is the General Manager and Assistant Winemaker for Kongsgaard Wines and has worked with John Kongsgaard since 2008.
2014 Ferdinand Albarino is sourced solely from the the Vista Luna Vineyard, owned by Markus Bokisch. Markus, probably the foremost authority on growing Spanish varieties in California, decided to plant the vineyard after beginning his career carefully farming some of the best vines in Napa. Markus, whose family is from Spain, looked to those roots when he decided to plant Albariño, Tempranillo, Garnacha Blanca, Verdelho, and Graciano (he even smuggled in a special massale selection of Albariño from its native Galicia, Spain.) Vista Luna's site, far to the north-east of Lodi, is in the rolling bench-land at the edge of the Sierra foothills. What makes it really unique is its cobbled, rocky soil and the cooling breezes which blow from the Delta to the Sierras.
A light gold color, balanced and attractively fragrant, this wine is savory and floral with orange peel, lime zest, lemongrass, quince and grapefruit aromas and flavors. Lees aging in neutral oak gives the wine finesse, sophistication, and a hint of nuttiness – a pleasing complement to the variety’s balance of natural acidity, slight bitterness, and salty finish.
2016 Ryme Cellars Vermentino Carneros, Sonoma, California $37
Ryme Cellars is collaboration between husband and wife, Ryan and Megan Glaab. The couple met and fell in love in Australia working as seasonal cellar hands at Torbreck Winery. Between the two, they have worked at wineries such as Pax Wine Cellars, Peay Vineyards, Sin Qua Non, and Marcassin. They started Ryme in 2007 with one ton of Aglianico and have continued to focus mostly on esoteric Italian varietals. The couple strives to make wines of distinctive character, tasting terrific on their own, however, truly shining with full expression when coupled with fresh cuisine. All of the grapes used to make Ryme’s wines come from conscientiously farmed organic and sustainable vineyards. Moreover within the winery itself, they use no cultured yeast, temperature control, or fining or filtering.
Vermentino is a delicious light bodied white wine most commonly produced on the island of Sardinia, northern Italy and areas around the Mediterranean. “Hers” Vermentino is Megan’s interpretation of Vermentino, pressed, settled and bottled early. Ryan likes to pick later, ferment on the skins and age longer. “Hers” is a fresh, zippy wine with aromas and flavors of pear, melon, lime, pink grapefruit, citrus zest, fresh green almond and rocky minerality.
2014 Francois Chidaine, Montlouis sur Loire 'Bournais' Loire Valley, France $56
Domaine Francois Chidaine was established in 1989 by Francois Chidaine across the river from Vouvray in Montlouis. It’s a fairly sizeable domaine, totalling 37 hectares, including 20 in Montlouis, 10 in Vouvray and 7 in Touraine. The estate has vines between 40 and 80 years old, all certified Biodynamic but none 0f his labels will say as much. For Francois, it is about the work not the notoriety. He is a true champion of the Chenin Blanc grape and touts its ability to produce vibrant wines that age gracefully. Francois is happiest on his tractor or with his hands in the dirt, but being among his barrels is a close second.
Montlouis is a 400 hectares appellation which was granted AOC status in 1937 (Prior to that all wines made in Montlouis were labeled Vouvray). Unlike most of Montlouis, which is on clay and flint, this 4-hectare vineyard (planted in 1998) lies on a pocket of clay and Bournais limestone, from which it takes it's name. It's a beautiful site, certainly one of Montlouis' fines and it produces an altogether more 'Vouvray' expression of Montlouis with a powdery, chalky structure that clearly reflects its soils and location. The power and opulence of this wine is equally balanced by the chalky vibration (the kind you might find in a great Blanc de Blancs) that runs the length of the palate and dominates the finish.
2013 Castello di Monsanto, Chianti Classico Riserva, Tuscany, Italy $39
Aldo Bianchi, a native of San Gimignano, left Tuscany before the Second World War to seek fortune in the North of Italy. In 1960, he came back to the area for a wedding and was enchanted by the view from the terrace of Castello di Monsanto. It was love at first sight which made him buy the property within a few months. But if Aldo was bewitched by the landscape, Fabrizio, his son, immediately fell in love with the wines he found in the cellar. Thanks to a passion for wine handed down to him by his grandmother, who came from Piedmont, and to an innate entrepreneurial spirit, Fabrizio, together with the untiring help of his wife Giuliana, have made the property what it is today.
The Chianti Classico Riserva is vinified in stainless steel with a maceration of about 20 days, and then it is aged in smaller wooden barrels for about 18 months, to then rest for a minimum of 3 months in glass. Fragrant and elegantly structured, this wine, a blend of Sangiovese and 10% Canaiolo and Colorino, opens with lovely aromas of pressed violet, iris, perfumed berry and baking spice. On the palate, notes of white pepper, toast, espresso and anise accent the black cherry core. Tightly knit but polished tannins give it a firm finish.
2012 Prieur de Meyney, Saint-Estephe, Bordeaux, France $50
Prieur de Meyney is the second wine of Château Meyney, one of the first sites in the Médoc to be planted with vines. In 1662, Chateau Meyney was a convent mentioned in records under the names Couvent des Feuillants or Prieuré des Couleys belonging to the Feuillants monks. Today, the estate stretches over some of the best hilltops above the Gironde Estuary.
Made with the same care as the first wine, Prieur de Meyney comes from the younger vines on the estate and consists of a blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot, and 10% Petit Verdot. Since its creation with the 1979 vintage, the team has had time to refine this wine and today it is a structured wine with intense aromas on the nose, and deep fruit flavours on the palate that show the ripeness of the grapes. It is an elegant and supple Saint-Estèphe, more forward than its big brother, yet built to pass the test of time.
2014 Emmanuel Darnaud, Saint Joseph, Rhone, Valley France $69
A young man with a bright future, Emmanuel Darnaud is well on his way toward making a strong name for himself as one of the most talented young winemakers to emerge from the Rhone Valley in the last handful of years, as acknowledged by leading Rhone Valley wine guru John Livingstone-Learmonth. His winemaking education came at the foot of the best, noted Hermitage producer Bernard Faurie, where Emmanuel spent 4 years alongside the artisan vigneron. He started out with just 1.5 hectares and in 2001 produced his first vintage. Fortunately, the domaine has grown in size and as of 2015, with the addition of a single Saint Joseph parcel belonging to now father-in law Bernard Faurie, and currently stands at 15 hectares, mostly scattered about the southern sector of the appellation. This area is notable for its presence of alluvial stones in the vineyards, not unlike those found in Châteauneuf du Pape further to the south, with pockets of brown clay subsoil underneath, making for supple, round, fruit driven wines.
The Saint Joseph bottling is from a single, one hectare parcel which goes by the name of La Dardouille or roughly translated as the blazing sun, aptly named as this southeastern facing parcel, overlooking the Rhône on its western flank, does not lack for sunlight or heat. Dense and compact crafted from 100% Syrah, this wine exudes dark, ripe berry fruit, dried flowers, and mineral tension all laid upon a satiny, complex palate.
Catherine Walker of the Boulder Wine Merchant has chosen wines to accompany our menu. There is more than one wine available for each course to allow you to choose the wine or wines that best suit your taste and budget. These wines are available for purchase from the Boulder Wine Merchant, and will be delivered to you at the table. Wine purchases are limited to one bottle per guest in the party. A small delivery and handling fee has been added to the retail price of the bottle.
For insurance reasons, guests may not bring their own alcoholic beverages to a farm dinner.