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Made from Gamay Petit Grains planted in 1953, grown on a limestone parcel high in magnesium, in the Clos des Vignes du Maynes in Cruzille, organic since 900 AD (!), now certified biodynamic. The energetic Julien Guillot vinifies his reds without sulfur or additives of any kind, producing complex, mineral, elegant wines that transcend their appellation. The 2018s here are extraordinary, showing the elegance, purity and balance typical of the estate with the wonderful ripeness of the vintage. The wine shows gorgeous red and black fruit aromas with cranberry, earth, stone and musk and hints of mint, chocolate and spice. The palate is bright and silky with raspberry/strawberry fruit, citrus, stone and earthy flavors, that continue on the very long mineral finish. Always one of the greatest Gamays produced anywhere, the 2018 Manganite is a young wine that will benefit from decanting or five to fifteen years in the cellar. Highly recommended! DL
The Ponzi vineyards are located in the Chehalem Mountains of the Willamette Valley in one of the newest sub-AVA's of Laurelwood District. The Ponzi family has owned and maintained this property since the late 1960's and is currently run by Ana Maria Ponzi with Luisa Ponzi as their winemaker. Together they petitioned to designate the Laurelwood District as its own AVA because of its unique Laurelwood soil; composed of basalt base with ice age windblown sedimentary soils.
Apparently the Benetieres didn't file some paperwork on time, and were thus denied the right to label this wine as Cote Rotie, but that's what it is, despite the Vin de France label, which is clearly covering another label.
Centenaires: Grenache 80%, Syrah 10%, Mourvedre 10%, from vines 30-100 years old; aged in a combination of large old barrels, and 1-3 year old barriques. Bottled unfiltered.
Nitida is a family-run vineyard and cellar planted in 1992 and has been consistently rewarded for their Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon. The fruit is all hand-picked and hand-sorted, and then vinified in stainless steel for freshness.
Purity, delicacy, finesse vinified. Amazingly lithe with little red berries and crunchy minerals. Possibly the finest domestic Pinot tasted. Here, here... cb