New Delicious Summer Whites
2010 Bret Brothers Macon – Uchizy La Martine
Brothers Jean-Philippe and Jean-Guillaume Bret exploded onto the scene with their 2000 vintage. They grew up in Paris, went to wine school, apprenticed at a number of notable vineyards around France, and took over the domaine, located in Vinzelles, in 1998. They now share all the work in the vineyards and vinify the wines together. They make wine under two different labels: La Soufrandiere, where all the fruit is from the domaine and they practice organic methods of farming; and Bret Brothers, their negotiant label, where they purchase some of the fruit, but practice both organic and biodynamic methods of farming and vinification. They adhere to one simple philosophy: “Exceptional grapes make exceptional wine.” As such, they plough their vineyards, they use no weedkillers or systemic chemicals on their 25 to 65 year old vines, and they limit their yields by natural methods such as debudding. Their aim is to mature healthy grapes that yield highly concentrated juice. The harvest is done entirely by hand in small 20 kilo cases so that the grapes are neither crushed nor oxidized. They go through the vines two or three times in order to pick only grapes that are fully ripened. the wines are raised half in casks, the other half in stainless steel tanks. Bottling is done by hand.
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2010 Woodward Canyon Chardonnay
Winemaker Rick Small established Woodward Canyon Winery in 1981. Since that time, the winery has consistently produced premium, award winning Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot as well as barrel-fermented Chardonnay. Early on, Rick determined that quality would take precedence over quantity. Consequently, Woodward Canyon has remained small, increasing its production from 1,200 cases in 1981 to about 15,000 presently. Woodward Canyon is located in Lowden in the Walla Walla Valley appellation. The tasting room is a restored 1870’s farmhouse. Woodward Canyon sources fruit from a variety of vineyards in several American Viticulture Areas (AVAs). They use the fruit from the Columbia Valley, which includes vineyards such as Champoux in the newly formed Heaven Hills AVA, the Red Mountain AVA, the Columbia Gorge AVA, and of course, the Walla Walla AVA. Their production from the Walla Walla AVA consists mainly of their own Woodward Canyon Estate Vineyard, Seven Hills, and Pepper Bridge Vineyards.
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2011 Franck Peillot Altesse Bugey Montagnieu
Montagnieu is a village south of Cerdon, with premières côtes overlooking the Rhône valley, and most of its production is a white sparkling wine made from Chardonnay, Roussette de Savoie, Gamay and Jacquère. The grape Roussette is called Altesse locally, and it survives in the Bugey in a few patches of old vines, for it is not as hardy, reliable and productive as others. Only two young winemakers in Montagnieu, Franck Peillot and Benoît Dumont, produce still wines exclusively from this grape. By law, the wine, Roussette du Bugey, can contain any white varietal, in any proportion. That’s why Peillot’s is labelled 100% Altesse.
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