Farmstead Case Wine Club - July Allocation


Mestizaje Blanco and Tinto (Organic and biodynamic)
Jean Vullien Savoie Chardonnay (organic)
dancing crow Sauvignon Blanc (SustainablE)
Azul y garanza rosado (organic, biodynamic)
Lorelle Pinot Noir (sustainable)
pfneisl zweigelt (Organic)
Scaia Rosso (organic)
COLTORENZIO PINOT BLANC (PRACTICING ORGANIC)
HAUTS VALLONS BANDOL ROSÉ (SUSTAINABLE)
FATTORIA DI BASCIANO CHIANTI RUFINA RISERVA (SUSTAINABLE)
SANS LIEGE RED BLEND OFFERING (SUSTAINABLE)

 

Mustiguillo Mestizaje Blanco Front Label

Mustiguillo Mestijaze Blanco

In 2017 I visited Spain on a wine buying trip with the folks at Valkyrie Imports; our second stop was in Utiel, in Valencia, to meet with Toni Sarrion, the proprietor and winemaker at Mustiguillo, an organic/biodynamic winery specializing in native grapes - mainly Merseguera for the whites and Bobal for the reds.  

Tony is a champion of resurrecting these almost lost grapes.  His Merseguera grapes come from plots planted at 3000 feet above sea level that he grafted over from Bobal vines that couldn't adapt to the higher altitude.  

His entry-level blend is called Mestijaze for both the red and white, and the white is a blend of 75% Merseguera, with lesser amounts of Viognier and Malvasia. The wine undergoes native yeast fermentation in tank and is aged sur lies in stainless steel.  The Viognier is immediately apparent on the nose with apricot, tropical fruit, and honey while underlying notes of white peach, scented flowers, and citrus hints creep in from the Merseguera. The tightwire balance between the fleshy Viognier/Malvasia and taut Merseguera continues with a fresh, fruity, and floral attack and an unctuous mid-palate that is kept in check by bracing acidity. Truly one of a kind, Mestizaje shows its unique personality is this pleasant, crispy, imminently friendly wine  Mustiguillo is an organic/biodynamic Spanish winery specializing in native grapes - mainly Merseguera for the whites and Bobal for the reds.

Mustiguillo Mestijaze Tinto

Bobal is one of the greatest and most under-rated of Spanish grape varieties, and now on the cusp of a renaissance in the Mediterranean vineyards to mirror that of the Mencia varietal in Bierzo and other parts of North-West Spain.

Mustiguillo is a family project, dedicated to organic viticulture and the pursuit of elegance and finesse rather than excess oak and the like. A well-rehearsed mantra maybe, but one that does not have many adherents of such pedigree.  Consider this a reintroduction to Bobal, and its champion, Toni Sarrion. In the late 1990’s, Toni began a one-man crusade to save this indigenous variety and coax it from obscurity and rusticity to the forefront of truly world-class wines.

Ever evolving and pushing the quality level forward, Mustiguillo has moved away from the use of overt American oak as seen in previous vintages in favor of concrete and French oak for wines of finesse and balance, realizing the potential of Bobal from the unique terroir of El Terrerazo. Mustiguillo was recognized for its extraordinary efforts by Wine & Spirits as one of the Top 100 Wineries of 2012.


91 points, Wine Advocate:  "The red 2018 Mestizaje was produced with a blend of 70% Bobal, 19% Garnacha and 11% full-cluster Syrah from head-pruned and dry-farmed vines from their El Terrerazo estate planted mostly in the early 1990s on limestone soils. Each plot and grape variety was fermented separately with indigenous yeasts in stainless steel and oak vats. It matured in a mixture of oak vats and French barrique for 11 months (there has been a change toward more and more vats and almost no barrels). This has a creamy touch, attractive, approachable and easy to understand, with some spiciness and a round palate. The tannins are fine and the wine comes through as neatly balanced with good freshness.”

The varieties are vinified separately and undergo malolactic in a mixture of oak and stainless steel. The final blend spends 11 months in French oak.

 

 

Vigno white 2019 FL 300x218

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jean vuillien chardonnay (Organic)

The eastern French region of the Savoie is one of the most exciting wine regions on the planet, and it's near the top of my must-see places to go once we can get on airplanes and visit other countries again.  

Savoie is blessed —a cool mountain climate on a warming planet, and about as idyllic a place to grow and make wine as one could ask for. Known more for skiing and other outdoor pursuits, the Savoie is not so well known as a wine-producing area, though within the area known as the Combe de Savoie, there are a handful of the best producers.  

With little-known grape varieties such as Jacquère, Mondeuse, and Altesse nestling alongside Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Gamay, the world of Savoie wines begs to be explored. I was astonished at the quality of Jean Vullien’s wines, especially when compared to most other producers in the area.

How were they producing such high-quality, clean and fresh wines when so many others clearly couldn’t? It transpired that Jean Vullien learned viticulture in his native Bordeaux and his two sons, David and Olivier graduated at the renowned wine college, La Viti in Beaune.  

The region’s best comes from a boomerang-shaped string of hillside villages between Grenoble and Albertville (site of the 1992 Winter Olympics) called the Combe de Savoie (Combe is a word of Celtic origin meaning a sharp, deep valley). Jean Vullien and his two sons, David and Olivier, tend 69 acres on the Combe in the villages of Chignin, Montmélian, Arbin, St-Jean de la Porte, and their hometown of Fréterive.  

The domain's holdings include all of the region’s indigenous grape varieties, as well as strategically-placed parcels of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. The wines range from a crisp, lemon and mineral Jacquère-based white that British wine author Andrew Jefford would categorize as “Muscadet of the Alps” to complex floral and spiced reds made from Mondeuse. In recent years, David and Olivier have also earned a reputation for their excellent Méthode Traditionelle sparkling wines.  Though the Vulliens have been making wine for 40 years, the family is perhaps best known as a leader in another segment of the wine industry.

Since 1890, Vullien Pépinière Viticole (vine nursery) has been supplying young vines to growers throughout France. In fact, they were the source for about 25% of the Chardonnay planted in Chablis after the ravages of phylloxera.  

Climatically, the Savoie is more challenged than many other wine-producing areas of France, hence the different native grape varieties. Jacquère, which is widely available, drinks like a dry Sauvignon Blanc and is superb with shellfish and seafood. Gamay, which is the principal variety of Beaujolais, is comfortable in this slightly cooler climate too. They are succulent, light and full of fruit with the Gamay Rose airing more on the side of a dry rose. Both work extremely well with Savioe dishes such as raclette, tartiflette, tarte flambee (flammekueche), and cheese fondues.

The prestige bottling is fermented and aged in stainless, and goes through full malo for a rich mouthfeel.  A perfect complement for fish and fatty foods, this highly aromatic Chard is perfect with fish and chicken. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dancing Crow Sauvignon Blanc (sustainable)

Tony Cartlidge is one of my favorite California Wine personalities.   He's a British transplant with an outsize personality, a memory like a steel trap, and a kind word for everyone.

He founded Associated Distributors in the '80s and was the first one to bring in Jorge Ordoñez's imported Spanish wines into California.    He founded Cartlidge and Brown winery around the same time, gaining placements in nearly every independent wine retailer and fine dining restaurant in Northern California.  (We carried his Chardonnay and Pinot Noir for many, many years.

Associated was sold to a larger house, and eventually Cartlidge and Brown collapsed.  Tony's not one to sit idly by, so he started, along with his son Stefan, Dancing Crows, a Lake County-based winery that makes just two wines - a Sauvignon Blanc and a Cabernet (both are on the shelves).

His Sauvignon Blanc is textbook for a crisp and clean CA Sauv Blanc. Visiting Europe? Stop in at Willi’s Wine Bar in Paris or the Groucho Club in London and order this month's bargain selection!   Yes, an American wine beloved abroad. It’s all because Tony Cartlidge’s vineyard yields a unique style of Sauvignon Blanc—lower alcohol, yet possessing the flavor concentration of a California wine and the elegance of a Sancerre.

Winery notes: "The 2019 Dancing Crow Sauvignon Blanc offers aromas of yellow peach, basil, and guava.  The palate has an invigorating, fresh texture, showcasing flavors of pear, lemongrass and crisp green apple, followed by a hint of lime rind on the lengthy, bright, full-flavored finish. The grapes were picked on August 27th at 21.5 Brix creating a subtle wine with full flavor at just 12.5% alcohol – a unique Sancerre-style experience in the New World.."

Here's a review by the Wine Enthusiast :  Lively fruit flavors and light accents of baking spices give this light-bodied wine an attractive profile, as crisp acidity livens the mouthfeel in an appetizing way.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Azul y Garanza Rosado (Organic)

The Azul y Garanza vineyards begin in the lunar landscape of Bardenas Reales Natural Park, the largest desert in Europe.

Founders Dani Sánchez and María Barrena (and Maria’s brother Fernando) work with “landscapes” – not merely vineyards - with each of their plots enjoying as much biological diversity as this harsh climate will allow. The surrounding plants, shrubs, trees, and animal/insect life play as much a part to the success of the grapes as the vines themselves.  

Winemaking is quite natural – the widespread, almost exclusive use of concrete vats, natural yeasts and gentle hands. Shallow, clay-traced soils, with minimal water, and irregular, almost non-existent rainfall, as well as extreme contrasts in temperature between day and night.

Due to these singular geoclimatic conditions, the vines offer a naturally low production of small grapes that have a high concentration and a perfect equilibrium.  Dani and María are passionate about organic farming and have additionally invested in farming their vineyards 100% organically, without the use of pesticides, insecticides, or chemical fertilizers that wear out the soil.

100% Garnacha from the vineyards of Murillo & San Isidro del Pinar, located just northwest of the Bardenas Reales. Certified organic and handpicked grapes from vines that are an average age of 15 years old on clay-calcareous at 400 meters.   The grapes undergo a 16 day, wild yeast fermentation in concrete tank  followed by brief aging in stainless steel until bottling and release.

A lively pink color with aromas of red fruits and floral notes. On the palate, you will find  strawberry and rose hip flavors with a hint of blood orange. Clean, and crisp with excellent  acidity - harmonious and persistent.

Pale peach color hints at a dry yet aromatically fulfilling wine. Aromas of Alpine strawberry, fresh plum and honeydew melon are accented by an exotic note of cardamom. On the palate, fresh yellow plum and strawberry fruits are enlivened by brisk mineral and savory flavors of fresh thyme. The finish offers a refreshing dry mineral sensation that is lifted by hints of garden herbs. This is an enthralling wine of great complexity that is refreshing and fun to drink. 

Previous Vintage Review, 90 points, Vinous:  Limpid orange. Fresh red berries, orange pith and a hint of pungent flowers on the highly fragrant nose. Juicy and light on its feet, offering vibrant pomegranate, strawberry and blood orange flavors that are complemented by a touch of candied rose. Finishes silky, focused and quite long, leaving sappy red berry and floral notes behind. It's really thoughtful of the importer to provide this wine in a convenient, single-serving liter bottle.

 

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Lorelle Pinot Noir (sustainable)

You are more likely to find Bigfoot in your local wine store than a $15.99 bottle of Willamette Valley Pinot Noir that actually tastes good. John Albin is well known for his winemaking at King Estate Winery and for the wines he made under his own J. Albin label, but his Lorelle is a bit of a secret, even in Oregon.

The Lorelle isn’t complicated, but it is the kind of quaffable “everyday” wine we're always looking to present to our club members.  Best of all, it tastes even better with a light chill. Straight out of the refrigerator Lorelle has this intriguing aromatic combination of caramel and blackcurrants. If you toast a marshmallow and dip it in blackcurrant preserves, you’ll know precisely what the Lorelle smells like. The palate shows off chewy tannins, muted acidity, and dark raspberry and toffee flavors. 

The fruit from this bottling comes mainly from two sustainably farmed Wilamette vinytards - Laurel and Settler's Hill.  Laurel vineyard is high elevation in the Chehalem Mountains and is a cool climate site, while Settler’s Hill, in Salem, is in the mid-valley and is low elevation, hot, and produces more intense Pinot Noir. The vineyards used in this wine differ in soil types, elevation, and clones providing a balanced portrait of the Willamette Valley.  Depending on the year, the Albin’s will round out the Pinot Noir with other vinyard sources.

One of those vineyards is planted at Goschie Farms. Located in Silverton, Oregon, it is owned and operated by Gayle Goschie. She is a third-generation hop farmer who was talked into grape growing by John while he was working at King Estate. She is a terrific farmer and produces intense valley floor Pinot Noir, predominantly from the Pommard clone. Another vineyard used is the Jesse Estate Vineyard, which is located at the base of the Chehalem Mountains. It is a really unique site that produces bright and vibrant Pinot Noir. 

All of the fruit for this wine is hand-picked. The fruit is fermented in small 1.5 ton vessels. Assmanhausen yeast is typically used, as it brings a bright black-pepper note to the wine and expresses the fruit in a way that is unmatched by other strains. The wine is aged in French oak up until bottling.

Look for aromas of blueberry preserves and oak spice, with flavors of chocolate-covered cherries that are balanced nicely with medium tannins and a lingering finish. One of Oregon's best values in delicious Pinot Noir.

 

 

Pfneisl Zweigelt Liters (Organic) 

Another fun and delicious project from sisters Birgit and Katrin Pfneisl. Rather than make wine with their father and uncles who run the well-established family estate in Austria, the sisters decided to farm their ancestral vines in Sopron, Hungary.

From the outset, their wines contrasted sharply with those of their elders. Organic farming, old vines, and wild fermentation, all contribute to the finesse of their wines. They're lighter, prettier, less structured, more aromatic, so we were happy to discover Birgit and Katrin's increasing involvement in the Austrian estate.

The Austrian Zweigler is another collaborative project born from the common goal of deepening our relationships with each other and our common love of Austria's dearest red grape, Zweigelt.

The young and charming sisters Birgit and Katrin Pfneisl,  partners in Pfneiszl Winery are responsible for the equally charming Kékfrankos (AKA Blaufränkisch). Birgit is responsible for the vineyards and winemaking, Katrin marketing and sales.  

Born and raised in Austria, their grandparents fled their vineyards in Sopron to escape Communism and settled just across the border in Kleinmutschen, Burgenland, where the “z”  was dropped from their surname.

In 93’ the Pfneisl family reacquired their Hungarian vineyards. Having since established  Weingut Pfneisl, one of Austria’s premier red wine estates,  Birgit and Katrin’s father Franz Pfneisl and his brothers,  decided to give these ancestral vineyards to the sisters.

After completing her University studies, Birgit set out to work far away from home. She made wine in Italy, Australia, New  Zealand, South America, and the US before returning home with dreams of an organic estate. Starting with the inaugural  04’ vintage, the Pfneiszl vineyards were farmed organically, in  09’ they were certified Organic. In addition to the fine  Kékfrankos, Birgit makes the delightful frizzante Sparkelina, a  stylish Merlot, and a range of thoughtful cuvées.   

Sopron is an old Hungarian wine village just west of the southern tip of Lake Fertö (Neusiedler See). The prized vineyards around it are mostly Austrian, though what is Hungarian is ideal. Most of the Pfneiszl vineyards are in the dry-farmed, slate and sandstone site of Kräftner. This southeast-facing slope was replanted about 12 years ago, healthy plots of old vines were left intact. Varieties include numerous clones of  Kékfrankos, some as old as 35 years, Merlot, Zenit (a local white grape), and small amounts of Sangiovese, Malbec,  Zinfandel, and Shiraz.

Birgit employs a wide range of organic techniques ranging from standard practices like native crop cover to less conventional methods like insect pheromones.  Birgit’s decision to pursue organic farming was at first controversial. Idealistic in nature, organic farming, in reality, is challenging and risky. So far, Birgit’s idealism and intuition are paying off.   

Grapes are sorted and de-stemmed at the winery.  Fermentation is conducted exclusively with native yeast. The  Classic line of wines are fermented and aged in stainless steel  while premium wines are aged in a combination of new and  used oak, mostly of Hungarian or French stock. Malolactic  fermentation is encouraged to finish though not demanded and  small amounts of residual sugar are permitted if a wine doesn't ferment completely dry. Most wines are lightly filtered.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Scaia Rosso

Scaia is a project of Tenuta Sant'Antonio in the Veneto, makers of wonderful Valoplicella, Ripasso and Amarone.

This family estate belongs to the four Castagnedi brothers—Armando, Paolo, Tiziano and Massimo.  From a long family of grapegrowers, the siblings came together in 1989 to create their own estate winery. They planted 72 acres of vines on Monte Garbi, a rocky, chalky mountain that’s challenging to farm but that produces intense, uniquely flavored grapes.  

While most Veneto bottlings come from large companies that buy fruit and juice from all over, the Castagnedis source fruit only from their parents’ vineyard and from their own low-yielding vines, which are handpicked (another rarity in the Veneto).   All of the Scaia wines are single varietal, made from organically farmed grapes, and packaged in a unique (and reusable) glass cork closure.    

Scaia Rosso is 100% Corvina, one of three red varieties native to Italy’s northeast Veneto region that provide the basis for three very different wines: bold, complex Amarone; juicy, mediumbodied Valpolicella; and lighter Bardolino.  In the last century, industrialization took over much of Veneto’s vineyards; quality went down as yields, aided by chemical fertilizers and mass processing, went up. In the last few decades, a counter movement, led mostly by small, quality focused vintners has taken hold.   This is a succulent, medium-bodied Italian red that’s ridiculously easy to drink. It’s fresh and supple, with plump cherry flavors edged in spicy and herbal notes that recall white pepper and rosemary.

 

 

 

 

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Colterenzio Pinot Bianco Cora (practicing organic)

One of the false myths in the wine world is that wines made from cooperatives is insipid, not noteworthy juice, only fit for the bulk wine market.   While cooperative wineries in France have, until the last 20 years or so, been responsible for perpetuating this myth, cooperatives in the Alto Adige (or Südtirol in German, the first language of many inhabitants here) have always made wines of great quality, finesse, and terroir.  

Perhaps it's because of the contrast between the warm summers and cold winters of vineyards grafted onto the Dolomite foothills. With its generally cool nights even in the height of summer, Alto Adige is able to produce some very focused flavors and a degree of finesse.  In the more northern part of the appellation, farms tend to be smaller, and it is often economically unfeasible for small farmers to produce and market wine.  

Colterenzio was formed in 1960 when 28 farmers formed a cooperative in order to gain their independence from the wine merchants of the time. These rebels named the newly-founded cooperative after their homeland, the small hamlet of Schreckbichl, (Colterenzio in Italian).  

Unlike the French co-ops which by paying by the ton, encouraged farmers to overcrop and bring lower quality fruit to the winery, Colerenzio works with farmers to encourage quality over quantity.  Now over 300 farmer families are members of the co-op, located south of Bolzano in the Adige river valley. 12 varieties cultivated. 45% of production is red wine, 55% white wine. 300 days of sunshine a year.  

Jancis Robinson:  "The two neighboring wine regions of Trentino (the lower, more southerly part of the Adige valley around the town of Trento) and the upper Adige valley produce Italy's most alpine wines in a region dominated by exceptionally competent co-operatives or cantine. Those of Bolzano, Caldaro, Colterenzio, Cortaccia, San Michele Appiano, Terlano and Termeno are notably quality-minded."  

Alto Adige wines tend to be brighter, less reliant on oak, focused, and clean, and these value-priced wines from Colterenzio are benchmarks of those descriptors.  These are all value-priced wines, that hopefully will find their way regularly into your homes and into your glasses.

While many people associate Pinot Grigio with the Alto Adige, it's Weissburgunder/Pinot Bianco that the natives drink.  Look for aromas of white spring flowers, ripe Bartlett pear, and roasted almonds take the lead. The juicy, round palate offers lemon pastry, juicy golden apples, and a nutmeg note alongside fresh acidity. It finishes on a slightly sweet note recalling glazed brown sugar.

The name Cora is a composition of the two Latin words Cornelianum (Cornaiano) and Appianum (Appiano). The female name underlines the elegance of the wine.  Excellent Alto Adige fruit, from vineyards at 1475-1800 feet of altitude, particularly distinctive for Pinot Bianco. Soils are gravelly with high calcium carbonate content; cool micro-climate with strong contrasts between day and night time temperatures. Fermentation takes place in stainless steel tanks with the temperature-controlled at approx.65°F, a small part of the must is put in large wooden casks. The new wine subsequently matures for several months on the fine lees.

91 points, Vinous:  "The 2019 Pinot Bianco Cora is deliciously ripe and extroverted, leading off with crushed yellow apple and sweet spice, with dusty florals adding grounding depths. It’s soft in texture, contrasted by salty minerals and mouthwatering acidity with notes of young peach and inner florals. This is deceivingly structured, and it shakes off that fruit-forward persona toward the finale. Consider me a fan of this high-energy and truly seductive Pinot Bianco."

 

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Moulin de la Roque Bandol Rosé Les Hauts de Vallon (Sustainable)

50% Mourvèdre, 40% Grenache, 10% Cinsault.

Founded in 1950 by the winegrowers of la Cadière d’Azur, St-Cyr-sur-Mer and Sanary-sur-mer, the Moulin de La Roque cellar was initially designed for the oakbarrel maturing of Bandol red wines. In 1964, through the efforts of the winegrowers and following numerous alterations, Moulin de La Roque became a wine production cellar for Bandol wines.

The  Bandol  produced each year at Moulin de La Roque are harvested, vinified and matured with a constant eye to achieving quality excellence. Backed by its expertise and the latest equipment, the Moulin de La
Roque cellar also preserves the methods that have forged the reputation that Bandol wine enjoys today.

Looking out to the Mediterranean sea and surrounded by hills and mountains, the terroir of Bandol forms a veritable natural amphitheater. Bandol terroir has the advantage of enjoying a microclimate which favours the optimum ripening of its principal grape variety, Mourvèdre.

Soil: Red sand loaded with limestone pebbles  Winemaking: Manual harvest grapes are destemmed to avoid harsh tannins. Grapes transferred to gentle pneumatic presses and the juice flows into temp-controlled stainless steel tanks. Following alcoholic fermentation, there is a lengthy vatting period of 20 to 30 days to allow the young wine to truly come into its own.  

Tasting Notes: Clear ruby pink color. Wide nose filled with powerful, exotic fruits and spices. The taste is wide, long, rich, delicate and tender; fruity with good persistence.

90 points Wine Enthusiast (2019 vintage):  Attractively structured with a layer of tannins from the Mourvèdre, this wine has bite as well as red-berry acidity. Richness gives the wine weight and makes it an ideal partner at the table.

 

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Fattoria di Basciano Chianti Rufina Riserva (Sustainable) 

Since the beginning of the 20th century, the Masi family has owned the Fattoria di Basciano estate. The Masi family has been making wine here for three generations. They are located right in the heart of the Chianti Rufina area, on the top of a hill overlooking the Argomenna Valley on one side, and the right bank of the Sieve river on the other.

The vineyards are at an elevation of almost 1000′ above sea level, lying on very stony soil, locally known as “Galestro”. The micro-climate is ideal for the ripening of grapes and olives. It is dry, with light breezes, marked by scarcity of rain and a remarkable range of night and day temperature in summertime. The 200-acre property is divided by vineyards (100 acres), olive orchards, and forest land (50 acres each).

93% Sangiovese 7% Colorino.  Grapes are picked about 7-10 days after the harvest for their entry-level Chianti Rufina. Fermentation takes place at a temperature between 25 and 28°C. Maceration (skin contact) of about 25 days. The malolactic fermentation is completed in tanks, then the wine stays for 18 months in French oak barrels, half new and half one or two years old.

Deep ruby red color. Concentrated nose showing plum and berry character. On the palate full and round, with soft tannins and a long, fruity, peppery finish.

92 points, James Suckling:  Plenty of toasted-oak spices here, as well as caramel and cedar, but also an impressive background of brambleberries and fresh dark plums. Full and hearty on the palate with soft, approachable tannins. Good poise and depth. Drink now.

92 points, Parker:  Paolo Masi's (Fattoria di Basciano) 2016 Chianti Rufina Riserva is a linear and elegant wine. The bouquet starts off with dried cherry and dark fruit, but just as much attention is given to nuanced aromas of crushed stone or brimstone. The mouthfeel shows medium intensity, and the tannins add some dryness; however, this wine produces very food-friendly qualities, especially if pasta or lasagna is on the menu.

 

Sans liege red blend offering (Sustainable)

 3K4A5100sqSM

Sans Liege wines are made by Curt Schalchlin, a name you might recognize, as he owns Groundworks and co-owns Fableist, both very popular brands here at Farmstead.  (At present, we carry about a dozen different Fableist and Groundworks bottlings).  Curt is the owner and only employee of Sans Liege Wines.  

Growing up in East Los Angeles, Curt was not a wine country kid raised among the vines. He got a glimpse of the wine world when coming to the central coast at the age of 20. He became enamored with winemaking and jumped right in. 

His wine label Sans Liege (sahn leej) or "without allegiance" aptly describes his tenacity to pursue winemaking on the central coast unhindered by the trappings of any particular style. He is excited to to have the opportunity to be a part of a winemaking region that is still shaping its history. For Sans Liege, he focuses on Rhone varietals (especially Grenache) and favors character over notoriety when choosing vineyards for in diversity lies the promise of uncommon opportunity.

The Offering is a heady, full-throttled Santa Barbara County GSM blend that goes well with many foods that go with red wines.  Distinctive, refined, and well-built, offering expressive black cherry, cigar box, green olive, and cured meat accents that build richness on the long finish. 39% Grenache, 36% Syrah, 25% Mourvèdre.  Curt recommends decanting an hour before serving, and chilling it down to 60F (half an hour or so in the fridge.  

Winery notes:  The early fall breeze brushes through the orchard, bringing with it aromas of red plum, cinnamon bark, cocoa, and freshly oiled leather. The harvest table Is bountiful; friends and family all gather 'round. Wooden bowls full of green olives and mixed berries are passed as you warm your hands on a rustic mug filled with anise black tea. You can’t help but smile with gratitude for the season.


 

 

 

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