Wine: Red, California
The People's Wine Company is a new endeavor dedicated to bringing inexpensive, well-made wines to the marketplace and to making a difference by donating a portion of the profits to social causes. This is a private label of David Bowler, one of the premier natural wine distributors in New York, and while at least some of the grapes in this wine are not organic, we feel that the reputation of David Bowler, and the full 10 percent of sales they are donating to charity make it a wine worthy of our attention. The People's Zin is rich and ripe with that classic Zinfandel spiciness.
Heller Estate has been quietly making first-rate wines from their organic vineyards since 1970. This one has dried berry and chocolate aromas with notes of cassis, mint, cranberry and pomegranate seeds on the long finish. A richly flavorful wine that California fans will truly enjoy, and a great value to boot! Winemaking Details: Temperature controlled, stainless steel fermentation. Aged for 2 years in oak, 40% new. Unfined.
The small team behind Bebame came together with a vision: to produce a lower alcohol wine in California that was as elegant and flavorful as the wines found in cooler climates of wine regions such as the Loire, Piedmont, and Pais Vasco. Bebame Red is their one and only wine and it is truly unique. This wine is lively with fresh red fruits, thyme, anise, and stone. It's a light wine that's ripe with a touch of tropical fruit, black pepper, and a clean acidity that makes for really easy drinking. And at 12% alcohol, you can worry less about drinking more than you think you should.
Michael and Anne, the husband and wife team whimsically portrayed on their label, founded Dashe Cellars in the same year they were married. Their carefully crafted wines show their passion and the wealth of knowledge in fine winemaking. This one is a classic example of a Dry Creek Zin, elegant and balanced with velvety mouthfeel. Complex aromas of black cherry, cassis and spices with flavors of ripe blackberry, dark cherry, clove, chocolate with lingering finish. Winemaking Details: Wild Yeast Fermentation, Unfiltered, Unfined
St Georges pinot noir derives from a site just below the southern end of the Santa Cruz Mountains. A benevolent climate, poor soils, fastidious farming and shy-yielding vines combine to produce tiny, immaculate, densely flavored clusters. The winemaking begins with ambient yeast, a dollop of whole clusters, élevage in neutral barrels, and the wine is bottled without fining or filtration. This is definitely a West Coast Pinot, with lush cherry fruit and lovely spice notes, but not overdone like so many have been from this region.
The name Martian was inspired by proprieter Nan Helgeland's sons, Martin and Ian– and it fits. Martian wines are out of this world! This medium bodied blend of mostly grenache is rich with red fruits, spice, black pepper, and a bit of fresh herbs and sweet oak. The tannins are subtle and clean on the finish, making this a wine to grab before some unearthy creature runs off with all of it – only 450 cases! Winemaking Details: indigenous yeast, 90% destemmed and fermented in large oak vats, aged 10 months, unfined and unfiltered, low SO2
Bucklin is an estate run by 4 siblings from fruit produced on their family ranch, one of the oldest vineyard sites in Sonoma. Old Hill Ranch is a a mosaic of over 2 dozen grape varietals, making their wines field blends. The grapes for "Bambino" come from young vines planted in 1998. Made mostly of Zinfandel, the grapes are picked early to keep alcohols modest and acidity bright. It is then aged for 12 months in old French oak barrels. Almost black in the glass with dark aromatics of spicy blackberry fruit, this wine stays lively and fresh on the palate without the jamminess you sometimes find in Cali Zins. This wine is elegant and focused, making for a great food wine. Winemaking Details: low added SO2, unfiltered
Since it was mentioned in a cult Japanese wine comic, Calera has been sought after everywhere for good reason.