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July 2024

  • Posted on
July 2024

Hot wines for hot times: Swiss Alps meets Itata, Copper from Peloponese, Austro-Hungarian rosé-ish, mostly orange chillable red, chenin noir, Provence not-rosé

Welcome to the latest installment of the Streetcar Monthly Pass. If you’ve already purchased a pass, thank you! If you haven’t, here's where you should go. Below you’ll find some information about each of this month’s six Monthly Pass selections. On to the wines!



2022 Agricola Grillos Cantores "Mi Nena"
variety: corinto (chasselas)
appellation: Itata


In 2019, Paco Leyton of Clos des Fous met the 70 something year-old José Neira and visited the vineyard planted by his grandfather over 150 years ago. Paco fell in love with these head-trained bush vines of corinto (aka Chasselas) located in the La Leonora subregion of Guarilihue. The single vineyard (1.5 hectares) sits on a steep slope of white silt, sand, and granitic soil, littered with mica and a high concentration of quartz. The vines are non-irrigated, plowed by hand, and naturally farmed. The steep terrain enables the vines to grow deep roots and produce complex, balanced wines that are vertical and mineral-driven. He also produces a version of corinto with flor, and eventually, he hopes to take advantage of of the red grapes on the property (pais, cinsault, and aramon) to create a blend in the future. Given chasselas is usually encountered in the Vosges or the Swiss Alps, it's easy to imagine pairing this wine with hard mountain cheese, which we wouldn't argue about. Beyond that, this makes a great apéritif and quite a versatile pairing wine. 


2023 Edanos "Cu14"
variety: roditis
appellation: Acaia


Edanos Winery is in Aigialeia, a winemaking region in the northwestern part of the Peloponnese peninsula. Here the mountains and sloping vineyards overlook the Gulf of Corinth to the north. The Ligdopoulos family is the third generation farming and making wine here at Edanos, with eighty acres dedicated to both indigenous grapes, and also international varieties. Cu14 is a skin contact roditis with a copper hue (get it, chemistry nerds?), the result of, you guessed it, 14 days of maceration.The colorful label, designed by @winebunnies is a “reminder of beautiful days diving for uni on the shores of the Peloponnese.” Pop the bottle and you can almost feel a pleasant Corinthian Gulf breeze! Aromatic, fruity and spicy, it’s an ideal pairing for grilled poultry, smoked fish, and veggie pasta.


2021 Weninger "Rozsa Petsovits"
varieties: syrah, zweigelt, pinot noir
appellation: Europe (Austria/Hungary)
biodynamic, vegan


Fritz Weninger comes from a long line of winemakers from this culturally Hungarian part of Austria, on the eastern border at the southern tip of the immense, oddly shallow Neusiedlsee. Here we're very close to the supposed birthplace of blaufränkisch, or as they say on the Hungarian side, kékfrankos. With some of the other varieties grown on his property, which falls on both sides of the Austrian/Hungarian, he fashions this somewhat darker rosé as an homage to his grandmother. Syrah growing in gneiss from Hungary mingles with zweigelt growing in loam and pinot noir from Austrian limestone to form this truly multifaceted, nuanced rosé. This wine serves as proof that borders are superfluous and that wine transcends all! Pair with bulgogi tacos.




2021 Chateau La Baronne "Juste Le Rouge"
varieties: grenache gris, mourvedre
appellation: Languedoc-Roussillon, France


In the heart of Occitania, there is a wild, un-spoilt land that contains its most beautiful secrets, the Corbières Massif. The Montagne d'Alaric is one of its treasures, one of its highest points. There, nestled in its foothills, in an extraordinary natural ecosystem, lies Château La Baronne. On this land, with its arid, hot Mediterranean climate, beaten by the prevailing winds, where the sun is king, the Lignères family makes fresh, elegant and drinkable wines that reflect the minerality of its terroir. It is here that Jean, a winegrower but also the village doctor like his father before him, accompanied by his wife Anne, continue the history of the family estate, highlighting the grape varieties that are the identity of the Languedoc, respecting the environment, biodiversity and people, following the philosophy of biodynamics. "First of all, we make quality grapes, from these grapes are born Great Wines." This is anything but just a red. 85% of the blend is grenache gris that spent 6 months macerating on the skins in earthenware jars. Perhaps more for color than anything else, the balance is mourvèdre aged in stainless steel tanks. The completed blend was left un-fined and unfiltered with a scant 32 mg/L of sulfur added at bottling. Is it red? Is it orange? Does it matter? Pair with the summer bounty!



2021 Pascal Janvier "Cuvée du Rosier"
variety: pineau d'aunis
appellation: Coteaux du Loir (Loire), France
lutte raisonnée (sustainable)


Pineau d'aunis, the once nearly extinct grape variety indigenous to the Loire Valley, is presently enjoying a minor resurgence. Just 50 years ago, plantings dwindled to only 16 hectares, due in large part due to the variety's susceptibility to rot, irregular yields, and soil sensitivity. Thanks to Pascal Janvier and a small band of quality-minded growers, total acreage now exceeds 400 hectares, which still pales in comparison to cabernet franc at 16,000 hectares. As grow plantings of pineau, so grows the recognition of the Val du Loir, an area surrounding the confusingingly-named, tributary of the Loire that reaches eastward, north of Tours. Roughly three quarters of all pineau d'aunis grows here, with the best coming from the appellation Jasnières, where Pascal Janvier has made his reputation with a range of gorgeous chenin blancs. His lone red offering, "Cuveé du Rosier" looks like a light pinot noir in the glass, but the first sip will instantly give pineau's signature freshly cracked pepper. Complimented by juicy, strawberry and cherry fruit and subtle herbs, this is a chillable red we can't get enough of. Whether it's homemade or takeout, this is the red wine to pair with spicy food. 


2019 Domaine Ray Jane IGP du Var
variety: carignan, mourvèdre
appellation: IGP du Var (Provence), France


Domaine Ray Jane, of the the ancient Provençal comune of Le Castellet, has been in the Constant family since the year 1288 (not a typo). Since 2002, Alain and Anne Constant run the winery along with their two sons Julien and Vincent. They have 30 hectares of vines on clay and limestone soil, consisting mainly of mourvèdre, in the Bandol appellation. One third of their vineyards are centenarian vines planted on restanques, massive Roman stone terraces built to prevent hillside erosion. Using modern organic techniques, the Constant family makes a classical array of the region's wines "with the utmost respect for tradition and nature, as our ancestors did before us." This IGP bottling is declassified Bandol, with an atypically higher percentage of carignan (70%), from 40-60 year old vines fermented whole cluster for 4 or 5 weeks, before nearly two years of aging in neutral oak barrels. Cheeseburger cheeseburger cheeseburger.