Recent Arrivals From California: AmByth, La Clarine Farm, Arnot-Roberts, Enfield, and More!

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We have not yet tasted a wine from AmByth that we didn't like - make that love! AmByth is Paso Robles' first and only Demeter-certified biodynamic estate comprising 20 acres of high-altitude grapevines, farmed impeccably and vinified naturally by Phillip and Mary Hart. The Harts have raised the bar (and a few eyebrows) in this prolific Central Coast region by dry farming, foot treading, and fermenting with native yeasts in a mixture of vessels (stainless steel tanks, barrels of various sizes, and terra cotta amphora) with no added sulfites. Yields are minuscule and the resulting wines are as complex, concentrated, and pleasurable as they are carefully produced. With summer in full swing, we are eager to pair AmByth's juicy, spicy Mark's Vineyard Grenache and rich, earthy PlayGround blend (Grenache, Syrah, Mourvedre, Counoise, Carignan, Roussanne) with meats and poultry from the grill. Their vivacious varietal Roussanne cries out for scallops, squid, and market-fresh veggies.

Hank Beckmeyer and Caroline Hoel of La Clarine Farm make natural wines with grapes from the most diverse and expressive terroirs in the Sierra Foothills, which are translated through fluttery florals, savory earth, and intense fruit, minerality, and herbs. Their invigorating 2013 Rose has arrived, in the company of the very dry yet rich and exotic Jambalaia White. Having settled in after their long journey, these wines are revealing La Clarine's characteristic beauty, layers, and zeal. We have some red wines to sell as well, which is a treat because these bottles rarely even make it onto the website!

We round out this offer with Arnot-Roberts' elegant and distinctive trio of Cabernets, more delicious oddities from our friends at Forlorn Hope, an extremely tasty Sauvignon Blanc from Stolpman (with no added sulfites!) and new arrivals from Enfield, Ghostwriter, the great Steve Edmunds, Turley, and Matthiasson. Here's to drinking American wines this summer! AR

 

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AmByth 2010 Paso Robles Mark's Vineyard Grenache

From steep, south-facing, calcareous clay slopes, Mark's Vineyard Grenache is a shimmering garnet in the glass, with fresh aromas of sour cherry, ripe raspberry, rhubarb, purple flowers, and a hint of cayenne. The palate is broad, bright, and thirst-quenching, with tart red currant, sour cherries, wild strawberry, tea leaves, and warm cinnamon and coriander spice that integrate with dry, dusty tannins and earth. Lovers of zero-sulfite Grenache/Garnacha will appreciate the clarity, balance, and pure deliciousness of this juicy California red. Perfect with herbed chicken, grass-fed burgers, and salty aged cheddar or manchego! AR

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $49.99

AmByth 2010 Paso Robles Playground Vineyard

PlayGround vineyard is a cool, west-facing, windswept one-acre field blend of Mourvèdre, Grenache, Syrah, Counoise, Carignane, and Roussanne at 1350 feet elevation. The wine is salty and savory with cool dark fruit, coffee, and aloe on the nose; the palate is a mellow swirl of muddled blueberry, brambly black raspberry, wild nettles, green moss, rich earth, and herbaceous fruit seeds on the finish. Utterly unique and full-flavored with a deceptively moderate 13.2% alcohol. (50 cases were produced with only 10ppm total added sulfites.) Perfect with lamb chops from the grill, eggplant in any form, and the buttery bitterness of aged gouda. So very good! AR

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  • $29.99

AmByth 2012 Paso Robles Roussanne Biodynamic

AmByth continues to wow us with this complex and sumptuous white wine from 1.33 acres of head-trained, dry-farmed, biodynamic Roussanne vines planted on the steep, southeast-facing StoneCross vineyard in deep calcareous-clay soils. Ripe pear, peach blossoms, and fresh green herbs on the nose, with a clear and powerful palate of spicy pear, tangerine, peach skins, lemongrass, creamy orange custard, tingly ginger, coriander, and figs. Pair AmByth Roussanne with richer seafood, poultry, salty charcuterie, or an egg-based brunch. Only 32 cases were produced (no added sulfites). AR

 

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  • white
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  • $49.99

La Clarine Farm 2013 Sierra Foothills Rosé

74% Syrah from coarse decomposed granite and 26% Mourvèdre from deep volcanic loam give us this dry, herbal rosé that is simultaneously thirst-quenching and serious. Juicy grapefruit, fresh papaya, rosehips, sea salt, and minerally earth are irresistibly intertwined. This is a great choice when you want a rosé with salty pork charcuterie, poultry, lamb burgers, and cheese and fruit plates. AR

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  • $19.99

La Clarine Farm 2013 Sierra Foothills Jambalaia Blanc

La Clarine's 2013 Jambalaia White (formerly known as the "White Blend") is a quirky and satisfying mix of crisp pineapple, fresh mint, thyme sprigs, powdered ginger, lemon-lime, and orange honey with taut, tingling acidity and a rich floral finish. The blend this year consists of 59% Viognier, 24% Marsanne, 10% Petit Manseng, 4% Fiano, and 3% Arneis. Aged cheeses, simple garlicky pasta dishes, clams, and salamis are inspired pairings. And if you're like us, you'll put one away for a year or two! AR

  • Out of Stock
  • white
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  • $21.99

La Clarine Farm 2012 Sierra Foothills Josephine + Mariposa Grenache Mourvèdre

Josephine + Mariposa comes from a unique and expressive vineyard of gravelly loam over yellow slate, planted to head-trained Grenache and Mourvedre. The folks at La Clarine Farm were surprised by how similar the two varieties' aromas and flavors appeared during and after fermentation (indicating that a distinct terroir was shining through). Energizing aromas of sour cherry, citrus oils, peonies, and purple grape skins; the palate is bigger-boned than the other La Clarine reds, with sturdy tannins, sumptuous black fruit, raspberries, brambly black currant, and a broad, stoney mineral tone. AR

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  • $19.99

La Clarine Farm 2012 Syrah Sumu Kaw

Planted in a pine forest at 3000 feet elevation on deep volcanic loam in El Dorado County, Sumu Kaw Vineyard is what La Clarine Farm's Hank Beckmeyer considers an "exemplary" source for Syrah. The 2012 vintage displays deep, smoky Syrah aromas with rich florals, piquant pine resin, rosemary, onion skins, and fresh oregano that follows through on the plush, pretty palate of raspberry, cranberry, currants, and spicy black pepper. AR

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  • $24.99

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  • $22.99

Arnot-Roberts 2011 Santa Cruz Mountains Fellom Ranch Cabernet Sauvignon

**This wine is in the warehouse and will not be available for pick-up or delivery until after Labor Day.** Fellom Ranch's Cabernet is planted at 2200 feet in the Santa Cruz Mountains' Montebello Ridge on unique soils of Franciscan chert, sandy loam, clay, and Serpentinite. This is the most powerful of Arnot-Roberts' three Cabernets, boasting dark berries, cedar spice, thyme, and orange oil on the nose and broad, concentrated flavors of cassis, red plums, sweet tobacco smoke, and a long, dark, earthy finish. Only 6.5 barrels were produced.

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  • red
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  • $74.99

Arnot-Roberts 2011 Sonoma County Chalk Hill Clajeux Cabernet Sauvignon

The Arnot-Roberts team has tended the same 12 rows of the low-yielding Clajeux Vineyard (located in the well-draining volcanic soils Sonoma's Chalk Hill AVA) since 2003. The results are consistently lovely, with demure spice and florals on the nose and a demure, mineral-driven, palate of red currants, tart purple plums, licorice, and tobacco. Only 5 barrels were produced.

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  • red
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  • $74.99

Arnot-Roberts 2011 Sonoma County Bugay Cabernet Sauvignon

*This wine is in the warehouse and will not be available for pick-up or delivery until after Labor Day.* The rocky volcanic soils of Sonoma's Bugay Vineyard (located 1400 feet up on a ridge of the Mayacamas range) yield a bright and balanced Cabernet with gentle aromas of wild strawberry, ripe tomatoes, and raspberry blossoms. Invigorating acidity and precise tannins frame the elegant palate of red berries, blood orange, blackcurrant, rosewater, and an earthy cocoa note. Only 6 barrels were produced. 

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  • $64.99

Forlorn Hope 2010 Yountville Yount Mill Nacre Semillon

Forlorn Hope's Matthew Rorick is inspired by the evolution of age-worthy Semillons of Australia's Hunter Valley. We, in turn, are inspired by the layered and alluring young Nacre! Aromas of tart green apple, oregano, tomato stems, spearmint, lime spritz, and green almond prime the senses for the complex, invigorating palate of jalapeno, key lime, golden apple, apricots, orange zest, and jasmine-green tea. Bone dry and shape-shifting, with a firm acidic spine and compelling herbal dimension that keeps us guessing. Sea bass or mackerel with green garlic and fresh herbs are a match, as well as sushi, salads, and crisp raw dishes. AR

  • Out of Stock
  • white
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  • $32.99

Forlorn Hope 2011 Batiscafo Verdelho Dewitt Vineyard Amador County

Thanks to Abe Schoener of Scholium Project and Forlorn Hope's Matthew Rorick, we are learning more than ever before about the Portuguese workhorse variety Verdelho and its complex Californian expressions. Forlorn Hope's 2011 Batiscafo comes from 2 rows in Dewitt Vineyard, which is 1300 feet up in the decomposed granite and red volcanic soils of Amador County in the greater Sierra Foothills region. Fans of Forlorn Hope should take note that Batiscafo spent its first year of life aging with the Que Saudade Verdelho barrels, before being sealed tightly and allowed to concentrate with no top-offs or sulphur for one more year. The result is broad and deliciously complicated with ripe zesty lime and musky apricot, subtle mossy earth, mineral density, and freshness. AR
 

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  • white
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  • $67.99

Forlorn Hope 2013 Amador County Dewitt Vineyard 'Kumo To Ame' Rosé

Forlorn Hope's Kumo To Ame rosé (made from a field blend of Portuguese varieties in Amador County's DeWitt Vineyard) is always an incredible pleasure to drink, made all the more momentous this vintage by the inclusion of the first fruit (Barbera and Syrah) from winemaker Matthew Rorick's expansive new vineyard in Calaveras County! Spicy peach and ripe papaya on the nose with bright, expressive flavors of tart cranberry, crisp mango, subtle green tea, and a deep, shimmering minerality that envelops the palate. AR

  • Out of Stock
  • red
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  • $22.99

Stolpman Vineyards 2013 Santa Barbara Ballard Canyon Sauvignon Blanc

Organic viticulture, dry farming, no added SO2, and native yeast fermentations means Stolpman's Ballard Canyon Sauvignon Blanc is top-quality, while its delicious citrus and mineral flavors make it a versatile and necessary addition to the domestic Sauvignon Blanc shelf! Aromas of  tangerine, lime blossom, and crisp pear on the nose; the palate is fruity and giving, yet marvelously acidic, with mouth-watering lemons, limes, green apple, ample limestone mineral tone, and a hint of fresh green herbs. AR

  • Out of Stock
  • white
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  • $19.99

Enfield Wine Co. 2011 Amador Shake Ridge Tempranillo

Well folks, here it is — our first domestic 100% Tempranillo! Enfield's John Lockwood exhibits equal parts skill, adventurousness, and respect for the grape in making this wine. Grown in the chunky quartz and blue schist soils of Amador County's Shake Ridge Ranch, this Tempranillo displays subtle aromas of tart red currants, wild cherry, and cinnamon sugar, with flavors of ripe Bing cherries, rose petals, grape skins. and dusky clove, with almond oil, grated cinnamon, and bitter cherry pits on the finish. Gentle florals, deep spice, rich but cool fruit, and subtle, pretty shape demonstrate a natural mode of being for Tempranillo when it isn't excessively extracted or oaked. We are addicted to Lockwood's Enfield Chardonnay and enamored with his delicate, expressive Syrah. But this may be the best Enfield yet! AR

  • Out of Stock
  • red
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  • $37.99

Ghostwriter 2012 Santa Cruz Mountains Chardonnay

Perhaps Kenny Likitprakong is the face of "New Californian" wine. Through his labels like Ghostwriter, Camp, Folk Machine, etc. he manages to buy fruit from some of California's most interesting terroirs and create fresh, soulful wines with a purity that speaks to European sensibilities made of new world material. Ghostwriter focuses on un-irrigated vineyards in the high elevation Santa Cruz mountains, and the wines have a tension usually missed by Californian growers. The 2012 Chardonnay shows aromatics of salt and lime skin, but doesn't hide behind acid and austerity.  This is the sunny west coast, and the wine shows texture, length, and complexity seldom found for this price. JR

  • Out of Stock
  • white
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  • $34.99

Edmunds St. John 2013 El Dorado County Bone-Jolly Gamay Rosé

Steve Edmunds is one of those wise Californians who sources grapes from places they should be grown, i.e. Gamay on volcanic soils, which produces his delicious Rosé Bone Jolly. Lovely, juicy red fruits with good acidity, incredibly crisp, refreshing, and fermented with wild yeasts.  This year's vintage has a rich, cool, blue minerality, and a long savory finish.  JR

  • Out of Stock
  • rosé
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  • $19.99

Edmunds St. John 2013 El Dorado County Bone-Jolly Gamay Noir

Since 1985, Steve Edmunds has been making honest, terroir-driven wines from the best pockets of El Dorado County that (in my opinion) more than titillate the tongue. His 2013 Bone-Jolly red cuvée is no exception. Made from 100% Gamay Noir, it is beautifully aromatic with candied black cherries, orange blossom, hibiscus and sweet spice aromas rising from the glass. Candied fruit abound on the palate balanced by a snappy acidity and a surprising amount of grip which would lend a hand to it pairing well with an array of different meals. I love drinking this wine year-round but it definitely screams summer. And I speak from personal experience when I say to make sure you have a few bottles around for your next soirée...it goes down surprisingly easy. Tim Gagnon

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  • $22.99

Turley 2013 Lodi Cinsault Bechtoldt Vineyard

This is a delicious and gulpable Cinsault from the gnarled 140-year-old vines of Lodi's Bechtoldt ranch, made to be enjoyed young by Turley vigneron Tegan Passalacqua. The 2013 reveals pretty aromas of sweet blueberry and soft purple flowers. The palate is gracious and layered with red and black raspberry, rose petals, crunchy blackberry seeds, wild blueberry, and crumbled, minerally earth. Burgers from the grill and a roasted beet salad set the perfect scene... Stock up! AR

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  • $24.99

Matthiasson 2013 Tendu Californian White Liter

The Matthiasson family pushes American wine forward with Tendu! Priced for casual, everyday drinking, this fresh, quaffable, and delicious liter of Vermentino from the Dunnigan Hills AVA of California's Yolo County offers pithy, herbal lime aromas with racy acidity on the tangy lemon, tangerine, and salt-inflected palate reminiscent of Albariño or Grüner Veltliner. This is a wonderful way to experience one of California's best producers at an affordable price. AR

  • Out of Stock
  • white
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  • $24.99

Matthiasson 2013 Tendu Californian Red Liter

Natural wine lovers will experience love-at-first-sip of this juicy, fresh, and affordable liter-bottle blend of Aglianico, Montepulciano, and Barbera, from Napa Valley's Steve and Jill Matthiasson. Red plum and ripe raspberry aromas race up the nose while bing cherry, sweet red strawberries, luscious peach, and blue flowers fill the palate alongside tingly acidity, easy tannic tone, and a pleasant touch of earth on the finish. Tendu bursts with personality and flavor; a harbinger of excellent, everyday-priced American quaffers to come! (Quantities are limited, so pack some away for summer.) AR

  • Out of Stock
  • red
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  • $24.99

Matthiasson 2013 Napa Valley Rosé Wine

Matthiasson's 2013 rosé is a characteristically mouth-watering blend of 36% Grenache, 28% Syrah, 26% Mourvèdre, and 10% Counoise from vineyards in the Dunnigan Hills (Yolo County) and Napa Valley AVAs. The home-grown peaches that were strewn about Jill and Steve Matthiasson's picnic table when I stopped by for a visit (and a glass of rosé!) last summer seem to infuse the pure, juicy palate of white peach, alpine strawberry, cool grapefruit zest, orange blossom, and crisp, salty mineral water. A thirst-quenching and versatile accompaniment to everything at the market and on the grill! AR

  • Out of Stock
  • rosé
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  • $24.99

Matthiasson 2013 Napa Valley Rosé Wine 1.5 Liter

Matthiasson in magnum! This year's rosé is a characteristically mouth-watering blend of 36% Grenache, 28% Syrah, 26% Mourvèdre, and 10% Counoise from vineyards in the Dunnigan Hills (Yolo County) and Napa Valley AVAs. The home-grown peaches that were strewn about Jill and Steve Matthiasson's picnic table when I stopped by for a visit (and a glass of rosé!) last summer seem to infuse the pure, juicy palate of white peach, alpine strawberry, cool grapefruit zest, orange blossom, and crisp, salty mineral water. A thirst-quenching and versatile accompaniment to everything at the market and on the grill! AR

  • Out of Stock
  • rosé
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  • $54.99