• Adam

Dean's List: June 2019


Summer is finally here! See what fabulous finds Adam has been sipping on this month!


Mas des Capitelles ‘Vintage’ Faugères 2015 Faugères, France

I adore a red wine that can simultaneously deliver rich, bold flavors and textures while remaining fresh and light on its feet, and this bottling does that and then some. The backbone of this wine is old vine Carignan, a grape that is often associated with rusticity more than finesse, but it’s handled here with care and blended in with Mourvèdre and Grenache to create a symphony of blackberries, thyme, and other dried herbs that immediately recall the south of France. I’m excited to feature this (and another wine from this producer, their lighter ‘Vieilles Vignes’) in this month’s Tour de France stop covering the Languedoc-Roussillon, so if you’re curious about giving this a shot, snatch up one of the few remaining seats before they’re history! $32.09 at Dreadnought Wines. Buy Now


Villa Locatelli Refosco dal Peduncolo Rosso 2017 Friuli, Italy

Sure, the wine is a mouthful to say, but it’s an even better mouthful to drink – especially if you’re looking for something a little off the beaten path. Refosco is a grape native to this northeastern corner of Italy, and it gives wines that offer a mix of blackberry, forest floor, white pepper, and light vegetal notes to round it all out. It’s earthy and intense without being overbearing, and a relatively moderate alcohol level (12.5%) keeps it dangerously drinkable. Looking for something different to bring to Sunday dinner? This wine’s for you. $16.36 at Dreadnought Wines. Buy Now


Ken Forrester ‘The FMC’ Chenin Blanc 2017 Western Cape, South Africa

It still hasn’t kicked in that I will represent the United States in Cape Town as part of the Wines of South Africa Sommelier Cup 2019, but this wine is part of the reason I won the American regional final this month. This was one of the wines they used to test us sommeliers during the blind tasting portion of the examination, and I immediately was able to recognize this beauty. In addition to using perfectly ripe Chenin blanc grapes, he also uses a portion of grapes affected by botrytis – the ‘noble rot’ that gives us many of the world’s finest sweet wines. As a result, the palate is luscious, mouth-coating, and full of aromas and flavors like honeycomb, dried apricot, orange marmalade, and beeswax with the vanilla and sweet spice of oak tying it all together. This wine was revolutionary when released, and it’s still one of South Africa’s flagship wines created from what has become its flagship white grape. Treat yourself to something special with this wine – and if you’re able to be patient, this will continue to develop spectacularly over the next 5-10 years. $64.19 at Dreadnought Wines. Buy Now


Domaine Lambert ‘Harmonie’ Chinon 2015 Loire Valley, France

When I was in New York for the Wines of South Africa test, I saw a couple of friends and we enjoyed this wine together. I was blown away by the beautifully rich perfume of this wine, which doled out ripe plums, candied violets, green herbs, and a peppery spice. Many Chinons (the grape is Cabernet franc, for those playing along at home) can be done in a style more suited toward early and easy drinking, but this wine shows the more powerful side of the appellation and is definitely built for aging. The wine is aged in clay amphorae and larger clay vessels called a Dolium, and the vineyard is fully organic and biodynamic – they’ve even got a horse doing the plowing between vines! $35.99 + tax at Vin des Amis (shop in TriBeCa, New York)

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