Thanksgiving Part 1: 'the new traditional'

Thanksgiving.  Whether you want to admit it or not, 'the holiday's' are staring us all down right now...they are right around the corner. We've held out long enough for the 'tis the season' type emails but it's really time to kick it into high gear, after all we do sell wine (the most important social lubricant during your holiday festivities).  

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite days of the year, a day to simply eat, drink and relax with loved ones.  The gifts you have are the ones on the table and the company you share them with...the only extra thing needed is an abundance of wine.

Traditions are also a big part of any holiday gathering and our tradition here at the shop is to do an annual 2 part series of tastings in the lead up to Thanksgiving.   Week 1 (that's tonight) is what we call the 'Non-Traditional' or 'not the same old wine you had last year' theme.  Tonight we bend the traditional rules of the road with some delightful wine perfect for the season and the veritable smorgasbord on the plate near the turkey.  Lot's of these wines are fresh new arrivals sure to please the crowd while giving your family wine geek something to do while others watch football.

Thanks Giving, Part I: The New Traditional:

Domaine Tricot, White Light, Auvergne, France: $25
Vincent Tricot always has a wonderful new wine to discover.  His tiny vineyard in the rural Massif Central, Auvergne region is like a secret garden blossoming with delicious wine.  We love having something from Tricot in the shop and this new white wine, 'White Light' is really great.  The first thing I thought of when I tried it was how much I want to drink it at my Thanksgiving.  A blend of chardonnay and a dash of muscat d'auvergne makes this aromatic but not too much and rich without being heavy.  So good. 

Philippe Tessier, Cheverny Blanc, Touraine, France $25
On paper this blend of sauvignon blanc and chardonnay might sound banal but believe us when we say it's anything but.  Philippe is one of the great producers of this tiny AOC in the central Loire.  His farming has been organic for over 20 years and his wines showcase the limestone and chalk soils of his town perhaps better then any other local producer.  Long lees contact gives this depth and power while it stays bright and dry on the pallet.

Forlorn Hope, Kumo to Ame Rose` $20
Matthew Roarick makes some wild wines.  They all have a penchant for being intensely aromatic, showing a combination of floral fruit tones matched with savory base layers. The grapes come from the famed Dewitt Vineyard in Amador County at 1300' above sea level.  Rose` tends to be a great thing on the Thanksgiving table and this one will please the wine geek in you as well as grandma. 

Stephane Tissot, Poulsard VV Sans Souffre, Jura $30
While gamay and pinot noir are true classics with the bird how about you take a tiny side step to the Jura and grab some Poulsard?  Stephane Tissot's wines are brilliant examples of precision natural winemaking that is deliberate and successful.  You can be assured that this old vine poulsard will be a big hit with anyone.  Tangy red fruit, soft acidity and no added sulfur so you can really drink all day!

Sven Leiner, Spatburgunder, Pfalz, Germany $25
So you CAN have some pinot noir if you really want to, how about a great new producer's spatburgunder from the Pfalz?!  Leiner is a great new addition to our German section and best of all he makes some red wine!  Certified biodynamic farming, natural, low-sulfur winemaking and rugged volcanic soils add up to a unique and pleasurable pinot noir.  Crimson red color, spicy fruit and soft texture. A perfect riff on the classic pinot noir.

Folk Machine, Valdiguie, Mendocino, California $20

There once was a wine called Napa gamay, vinified for early drinking. California grew more than 6,000 acres of the grape, until admitting that you enjoyed light-bodied wine became embarrassing. Later we learned it was not gamay but valdiguié, a varietal from the south of France. Scarce today, valdiguié is primed for rediscovery as our tastes turn from high-proof fruit bombs to lower-alcohol acid trips. Hobo Wine Co.'s Kenny Likitprakong sources fruit from cooler vineyards in Mendocino, and because 2013 was a cool vintage, the wine is just 11,7 percent alcohol. Smelling of clove and resinous herbs, valdiguié has mouth-watering acidity, and then it slaps you with a belt of fresh, dry fruit punch.

Rene Mosse, Moussamoussette, Anjou, France $30
Nothing like a little off dry, slightly cloudy, slightly sweet, slightly fizz grolleau pet'nat for Thanksgiving.  I love the canned cranberry sauce personally and this wine is kind of like drinking that in liquid form...I promise, it's actually delicious.  This is limited stuff so grab it today and drink up!

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