Bodegas Olivares Rosado Garnacha Jumilla, Spain 2021
Jumilla was one of the few places in Europe spared during the Phylloxera epidemic of the late 1800’s. Virtually everywhere else on the continent, vineyards were devastated.
For Jumilla, the key to its vineyards’ survival was their sandy soil—which is anathema to the Phylloxera insect. As a glorious consequence, Jumilla not only has some of the oldest vines in the world, but also the largest number of ungrafted vines.
Today, Jumilla is awakening to its vast potential, and a winemaking revolution has followed — led by growers like Olivares’ Paco Selva. He owns 65+ hectares of ungrafted old vineyards in the northern part of the appellation, called La Hoya de Santa Ana. It is the coolest sub-zone of Jumilla, with sandy, lime-rich soils that yield intensely aromatic wines, while protecting the ungrafted vines from Phylloxera.
James Suckling 90 Points – fresh and subtle rose with red and white cherries, freshly crushed strawberries and a hint of grapefruit. Crisp, medium-bodied palate with a filling of elegant cherries and strawberries. 100% Garnacha. Unbeatable at this price. Cooper’s Price $11.99 or, Mix & Match 3 btls $10.79/btl
Birichino Malvasia Bianca Monterey, CA 2021
What is Malvasia? Malvasia Bianca is considered the head of a broad family of Malvasia grapes that span the Mediterranean. There are numerous regional synonyms for Malvasia Bianca, reflecting the range of environments in which it is grown and confusing ampelographers (the science concerned with the identification and classification of grapevines) for centuries. It can be found across such diverse climes as California’s Central Coast to the hillside vineyards of the Balkans.
Kevin’s Notes –The Birichino Malvasia is extremely aromatic with honeysuckle, gardenias, and orange blossoms. You almost want to put it behind your ear. The flavors follow the aromatics with sweet ripe apricot and other citrus compotes. The wine is bone dry and is homerun for many appetizers surrounding cheese, and fruits. A very startling wine to the senses!
Cooper’s Price $20.99 or, Mix & Match 3btls $18.89/btl
Claudio Mariotto Braghé da Uve Freisa, Piedmont Italy
The vineyards are grown without the use of chemical fertilizers, herbicides, or systemic products
The Grape – Freisa is a black-skinned grape variety native to the Piedmont wine region of northwestern Italy. It is used to make red wines of various styles, from sweet and still to dry and sparkling (both frizzante and spumante styles).
Winemaking – At least 6 months in steel tanks and at least 6 months in the bottle. Soft and slow pressing of the grapes, maceration for 4/5 days and racking. The wine is aged at least 6 months in steel tanks and at least 6 months in the bottle.
Winery Tasting Notes – Deep red with intense garnet reflections Elegant, delicate with a background of rose, morello cherry and raspberry evolves into pleasant musky scents with aging.
Kevin’s Notes – You would think after 36 yrs I would know this grape, but Italy has hundreds. This wine is so tasty and fun I had to buy it! Cooper’s Price $19.99 or, Mix & Match 3btls $17.99/btl
Chateau tour des Termes, Saint-Estephe Bordeaux 2016
The Chateau Tour Des Termes owes its name to an old tower located on a plot called “Les Termes.” The discovery of Gallo-Roman origna at the foot of the tower favors the hypothesis of the presence of an old lighthouse at this location, marking the entrance to an outer port of the ancient Gallo-Roman city, Brion, located a few kilometers away. The name “of the Terms” would mean the “end of the land.” The 2016 vintage will be remembered as one of the great years of the 21st Century for Bordeaux.
Wine Critic – 91pts Vinous A blend of 60% Merlot /30% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% each of Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. “The 2016 Tour des Termes has a classic blackberry, cedar and briary scented bouquet that demands some encouragement from the glass. The palate is medium-bodied with very fine tannin, balanced acidity, quite natural and elegant in style with a persistent and disarmingly pure finish. Bravo – this is a great Tour des Termes.” Other Wine Critic Rating: 92 Points Wine Enthusiast – 92 Points Robert Parker – 92 Points Wine Spectator Cooper’s Price $34.99 or, Mix & Match 3btls $31.49/btl