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Posts Tagged ‘biodynamic wine’

Pascal Pibaleau Rosé

Pascal Pibaleau Rosé

Close to the town of Tours in the heart of the Loire Valley, Domaine Pibaleau sits nestled between two of the region’s historic Châteaux: Azay-le-Rideau and Langeais. The 12 hectare Domaine Pibaleau has been family owned and operated since 1886. Here Chenin Blanc, Gamay, Cabernet Franc and Grolleau are grown on organically farmed sandy-clay soil near the banks of the river L’Indre. Domaine Pibaleau has organic certification, and they work according to biodynamic principles.

Pascal Pibaleau’s rosé is made from 100% old vine Grolleau. This uncommon varietal is named for the French word for crow, a name that describes its characteristic black color. Even in the brief time that the wine is exposed to the grape skin when making a rosé, Grolleau’s dark skins impart a striking, deep ruby hue. With juicy red fruit and racy acidity, this wine pairs perfectly with the soft-ripened goat cheeses traditionally produced in the Loire region. Try it with a young, tangy Valençay to bring out a cherry fruitiness in the wine, or choose a stronger, aged Couronne de Touraine for a more complex, fascinating pairing. We also love this rosé with a simple Galet du Cher or Selles sur Cher and a drizzle of strong chestnut or buckwheat honey. Herbaceous notes and a zesty, mineral backbone also make this wine a great companion for charcuterie and grilled chicken or pork.

Although it is quite dry, the Grolleau is a mouth-filling delight of texture. It’s supremely thirst quenching and excellent for these muggy, stormy September nights. Serve this lovely rosé well-chilled and if it’s not too rainy sip it on your back porch or in a lawn chair!

 

Rory Stamp is a classroom instructor, Wine Buyer, and cheese monger at Formaggio Kitchen Cambridge.

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Ekiola Sheep in the Pyrenees Mountains

Ekiola Sheep in the Pyrénées Mountains

A trip through the French Basque country is one of distinct sights, scents, and flavors. Rolling hills of green pastures are punctuated by craggy mountain peaks and deep valleys, and sheep are everywhere! When Ihsan, Valerie and I traveled through the area in the fall, we tasted a huge array of sheep milk cheeses and an assortment of intense but beautiful wines. Here, we’re featuring a few of our favorite tastes: Ardi Gasnas from Fromagerie Pardou and Ekiola, and a killer red wine from Domaine Ilarria of Irouléguy. Ardi Gasna (or gazna) is Basque for “sheep cheese,” and these smooth, rich sheep cheeses are a specialty in the Pyrénées mountains.

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Holiday Wines

The holiday season has arrived! We all look forward to these long nights around the table, sitting with friends and savoring dishes to keep us warm. Braised meats, slow cooked beans, root vegetables, rich desserts: all of them cry out for wines that can stand up to the plate. Here are a few treats from our shelves that we look forward to savoring all year-long – wines we save for special occasions, just like this month’s holiday gatherings. Here we present a show-stopper right bank Bordeaux for your holiday meats, as well as two after-dinner wines: the first, a Barolo Chinato to sip with dark chocolate, and the second, a rich red Banyuls from southern France. Enjoy! (more…)

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Château des Rontets Vineyard

Château des Rontets Vineyard

It was truly a pleasure to visit Claire and Fabio at Château des Rontets last October. The couple met as architects in Milan, Italy, and eventually relocated to France to take charge of Claire’s family estate in the town of Fuissé, Burgundy. Fabio and Claire don’t subscribe fully to all of the intricacies of the biodynamic philosophy, but they have adopted some biodynamic techniques such as following a lunar calendar for harvesting and other cellar jobs. All of the estate’s grapes are grown organically and carefully hand harvested. (more…)

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