Welcome to the latest installment of the Streetcar Monthly Pass. If you’ve already purchased a pass, thank you! If you haven’t, you should check out this page to learn how it works. Below you’ll find some information about each of this month’s six Monthly Pass selections. On to the wines!
2016 Cans Rafols "Terraprima" Blanco
appellation: Penedès, Spain
varieties: xarello, riesling
The Garraf Massif is a mountain range located south of Barcelona along the Mediterranean coast between the towns Castelldefels and Sitges. In 1979, Carlos Esteva began to restore his grandfather’s house and replant many of the vineyards and orchards. Now totaling 90 hectares of vineyards, 2 hectares of olive trees and 1 hectare of almond trees, the farm has been organic since 2008, and has recently introduced biodynamic practices in some vineyards. The rugged, stony landscape presents various microclimates which Carlos has taken advantage of by planting over 28 grapes varieties. While most of the vines were planted over the last thirty years, there is one old vineyard of xarello planted in 1948. This bottle is a blend of old vine xarello and riesling, vinified separately in tank and a small part in chestnut barrels, then blended before bottling. The xarello provides the backbone and roundness of the wine, whereas the riesling provides the elegance and depth. Pair this white with creamier dishes, such as risotto or brandade.
2016 Domaine Le Roc des Anges "L’Effet Papillon" Blanc
appelation: Côtes Catalanes, France
varieties: grenache blanc, macabeu
This domaine is the work of Marjorie Gallet, assisted by her husband Stephane, who together farm 20 hectares of vines in the schist-rich soils of Agly, in the foothills of the Pyrenées mountains of Southwest France. Marjorie grew up around wine, in the Côte Rotie, and her point of view and instinct is clear in the nuanced wines she produces. L’Effet Papillon (“butterfly effect”) is her entry level table wine, made of grenache blanc and macabeu vinified and aged in cement. This white is zippy and fresh, with heady aromas of jasmine, and loaded with fresh melon and apricot fruit. In the mouth, the fruit is exotic and the finish, crisp and fine with gorgeous texture. Pair with anything from full flavored seafood like a scallop ceviche, to a cheese plate or roast chicken - a truly versatile white.
2016 Terres Blondes Gamay
appellation: Val de Loire, France
The Marionnet family has owned the Domaine de la Charmoise since 1850. The winery is nestled in the village of Soings, 30 km south of Blois, deep in the forests of La Sologne. Henry Marionnet became a renowned figure in the region in the 1960's, for among other things, being one of the first producers to make truly honest Gamay here during a time of over-production. Henry's son Jean-Sebastien maintins the clear vision and style set forth by his father, under whom he began working when he was just 10 years old. Try this spritely red with a spring soup made with the first asparagus, chives, and pea shoots you can find.
2015 Viña Zorzal Graciano
appellation: Navarra, Spain
Zorzal is the brainchild of Antonio Sinz and his family. The estate was founded in 2009, centered around a handful centenary vineyards that the family spent the better part of 15 years refurbishing and slowly bringing back to production through conversion to organic farming, the use of no pesticides or fertilizers, and slowly reducing yields. The estate is focused on the native varieties of Navarra, mainly garnacha, graciano, tempranillo and mazuelo. This bottling is 100% graciano from 35 year old vines, fermented and aged in used French oak barrels before bottling. Aromatic and lush, it carries loads of dark fruit mid-palate, and a mineral-fresh finish. Pair with chorizo and roast potatoes, or a savory Portuguese-style kale soup with plenty of paprika.
2016 Judith Beck Blaufränkisch
appellation: Weinland, Austria
appellation: Vin de Pays des Collines Rhodaniennes, France