Thursday, June 7th, 2022
Bastille Day Prep : The French Newsletter

This week: Bastille Day is one week away, and we think it's time to drink some of our favorite French wines and ciders. Let's explore some très bien options!
-French Desserts & Wine Pairings-
Delicious desserts are always a preferred way to celebrate — especially when toasting France and their revolution. Many of the world's most beloved desserts have their roots in French soil, as do many of the best dessert wines! We explore some of our favorite pairings today, in observance of the upcoming Bastille Day.
Pear Clafoutis + Sauternes

Buttery crust, silky custard, and perfectly ripe pears call for a dessert wine of equal richness and dynamic layering of flavors. Sauternes, the botrytis affected dessert wine of Bordeaux, always delivers. The honeyed sweetness is balanced by bright acidity, and notes of dried fruits and spice will add dimension to this delicate dessert.

2017 Lafleur Mallet Sauternes (375ml) - $21.99
Cream Puff + Rosé Demi-Sec

So simple yet so scrumptious! Has anything ever made you as happy as pâte à choux filled with fresh whipped cream? Probably not — unless you were washing it down with a glass of lively bubbles. We suggest opting for a demi-sec sparkling so that the sugar dusted delights don't make your sparkling taste sadistically bitter in comparison. We love a rosé demi-sec cremant to add an accent of fruit into the equation!

Bayle-Carreau Demi-Sec Cremant De Bordeaux - $17.99
Tart Au Citron + Dessert Chenin Blanc

This simple summertime favorite is the perfect balance between tart, high tone lemon and the salty, buttery goodness of a well made crust. Perfection. For a wine pairing, it's ideal to find a wine that compliments this intriguing tension. We love to pair this tart with a rich dessert Chenin Blanc with a weighty texture but bright acidity (that balances the overt hedonism).

2015 Domaine Des Baumard Quartes De Chaume - $54.99
Raspberry Rose Macaron + Gewurztraminer

Fruity & floral, this special dessert is meant to be savored. Melt-in-your-mouth delicate, these morsels do best with a wine that's similarly soft in style. We love an Alsacian off-dry style with a full-bodied and silky mouthfeel with notes of stone fruit, lychee, yogurt & biscuits.

2015 Kientzler Gewurztraminer Osterberg Grand Cru - $61.99
-French Ciders-
Eric Bordelet Normandy Ciders

Eric took over his family Domaine in 1992 after years of working as a Sommelier. The Sidre Tendre is one of our favorites for brunch — perfectly sweet and fruity, it pairs efforlessly with pastries. The Poire Granit is another must try, made from the oldest trees on the property with old roots reaching into the granite rich soils below. It's complex, slightly sweet, and endlessly food friendly.
Cidre Rhuys Brut Cider

Cidre Rhuys has been producing unpasteurized artisanal ciders, free from preservatives, since 1928. They call this "corked cider" and it translates to raw, fruity and sweet. Although, we most enjoy their drier Brut Cider in the Summer months for a crisp refreshing option!
Cedricle Bloas BrutBrut Ciderie Du Leguer
Brutbrut is a drier cider with only a slight effervescence. The mouthfeel is juicy and rounded — fruity but with balancing acidity and a touch of bitterness. This organic cider is fermented naturally and bottled without sulfur. Brittany cider is an exciting option outside of the go-to Normandy region.
Le Pere Jules Poire De Normandie
Le Pere Jules is a 4th generation family business. Their orchards are organically farmed and fertilized by the 100+ cows living freely on their property. Their ciders are the epitome of finesse — clean, fresh, and food friendly! Perfect for brunch - we suggest you start your Bastille Day off with crepes and Le Pere Jules.
-Friday Tasting Table-

Join us for a free wine tasting this Friday - led by Logan from Tradition!
6oz Pour Wine Education Class:
France in 7 Glasses
Thursday, July 14th, 7pm
($60 per ticket)

Join us in our cellar for an educational extravaganza led by Doug Hultgren of 6oz Pour.
To reserve your seat, click the link below!

Staff Picks: What to Drink This Week
Things our staff thinks you should consider trying!

2020 Chateau Haut Rian Bordeaux Blanc - $15.99
With Bastille Day right around the corner, I am setting my sights on drinking something French, of course. Not all French wine has to break the bank, and this little value from Bordeaux is just the ticket if you are enjoying some light snacks a la Francaise. White flowers, lemon, seashells and crunchy minerality in the glass, this blend of 60% Semillon and 40% Sauvignon Blanc is the perfect match for oysters, salads and soft cheeses, all made lovingly by a father-daughter duo.

2018 Messmer Pinot Noir Pfalz, Germany - $24.99
Winemaker Gregor Messmer practices organic viticulture and takes care to preserve the nature of the grape from the vineyard to his winemaking techniques. This Pinot shows bright aromas of framboise sauvage, with the palate demonstrating a friendly tannin structure, bright cherry/raspberry fruit and a savory, smoky note; the perfect quaffable summer red that excels with a chill in its serviceable 1 liter bottle! Try this Pfalz Pinot with grilled bratwurst or a portobello mushroom burger. 

2019 Château Bourdieu Blaye Côtes de Bordeaux No. 1 - $22.99
Maybe full strength Merlot is more firepower than you think you need in the prime of Summer but never mind all that, this wine is a winner. Also, since barbeque ribs exist and you may find yourself eating some, you're going to want a bottle or two hanging around. I've long been a proponent of 'bargain' Bordeaux. Even though some of the worlds most expensive and sought after wines are grown there, most of the wines are not the lofty classified growths. Possibly through sheer abundance, some amazing windows are released at amazing prices. This Chateau Bourdieu certainly qualifies. The fruit is stunningly rich and fresh with ripe plum and blackberry flavors and as intense as it is it is never weighty or clumsy on the palette but is instead pure and seamless with a smoothly lingering finish. The massive fruit is nicely augmented with hints of vanilla, tobacco and spice. Great to drink now and will continue to show for the next 5 to 10 years.

2021 GroundWork Picpoul Carbonique - $22.99
North Loop Wine & Spirits has been expanding their skin contact selections; as you enter the store you'll see "rose island" straight ahead down the center aisle. Just as you are approaching this not-so-desolate island, you will pass the ever-evolving domestic orange wine section. Sans Liege Winery makes a statement both in taste and aesthetic with "Groundworks". Winemaker Curt Schalchlin states that the dark and visceral nature of the German Expressionist art movement resonated with his relationship to wine. Woah, that's heavy. Now to taste...this orange wine is hardly a blend; Picpoul Carbonique is 90% Picpoul Blanc with a mere 7% Malvasia and 3% Malbec. This picpoul blanc dominant wine is full of surprises. Complicated in the best way, fruit forward with a slight tannic finish that evolves as the wine warms.  

2020 Lena Filliatreau Saumur Loire France - $24.99
First and foremost it's delicious! It is also organic. A very well made chenin blanc for a kind price. It shows great freshness and has mouth watering acidity. Lastly, it pairs well with a wide variety of food ie, grilled pork chops, green beans with brown butter and almonds, and sauteed lake trout all work well with it.  

2015 Howard Park 'Miamup' Chardonnay, Margaret River, Western Australia - $25.99
From the Burch family vineyards in the most southern (therefore coolest) section of Margaret River, Winemaker Janice McDonald makes this very satisfying and approachable age-worthy Chardonnay. In the stunningly beautiful area of Margaret River, the cool winds of the Southern Ocean meet the warm waters of the Indian Ocean at the very tip of South West Australia. The Burch family is fully committed to Organic viniculture and, since they don't use any pesticides or herbicides, they have roving guinea fowl and flocks of sheep to help keep the vineyards pest free. After hand harvesting the Chardonnay goes through natural fermentation in French Oak barrels. Aromas of melon, apricot, caramel and vanilla lead into a palate of fleshy peach layered with nutmeg, lemon, butter, and brioche. Chalky mineral texture and citrus acidity lift it to a long finish. Australian wine critic, Jeremy Oliver, has praised this vintage as age-worthy through 2023. Now is a great time to enjoy this rare treat!
VERY IMPORTANT: Furry Friends Who Visited This Week
Cheers everyone!
-The Team at North Loop Wine & Spirits