Exciting Arrivals from California: Three Mourvèdres and a Pair of Great Grenaches!

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Dirty & Rowdy's Hardy Wallace is one of the hardest working (not to mention nicest) winemakers in the business. His expressive lineup of Mourvèdre wines (eight of them) alone requires consistent travel from the winery in Santa Rosa, California to far-flung parcels around California's Santa Barbara, Monterey, Contra Costa, Mendocino, El Dorado, and Amador Counties. Dirty & Rowdy’s reds are hard to come by and we rarely, if ever, get to enjoy more than one at a time. So when a trio of long-gone whole cluster fermented Mourvèdres came our way, we jumped at the chance to offer them to you today (and revisit them ourselves)! Dirty & Rowdy's reputation for brisk, jubilant, natural wines with refreshing fruit and moderate alcohol often eclipses their impressive power and herbaceous depth. All of these wines will benefit from hours (often days) of air and make brilliant additions to your lamb and brisket feasts this weekend.

When spring arrives and grills start flaring, there is no greater accompaniment to grilled meats, poultry, and vegetables than Grenache from very old vines. They are food friendly and thirst quenching, with the sort of dimension and complexity that only old vines can confer. Chris Brockway makes his Broc Cellars Cassia "Grenache(s)" from Mendocino's Gibson Ranch, where the 100+ year old vines are believed by different winemakers to be Grenache Gris, Grenache Noir, or both. Pax Mahle of Wind Gap is more frequently associated with elegant, evocative Syrahs and Pinot Noirs, but his old vine Grenache is downright lovely, from 85+ year old, head trained vines planted in the sandy soils of Sonoma's Sceales Vineyard. Please find detailed notes below for all of these wines and some of our favorite whites from these producers as well. Cheers! Ariana Rolich

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Dirty and Rowdy 2013 Santa Barbara Highlands Mourvèdre Especial

The Mourvedre Especial is a fascinating outlier that showcases winemaker Hardy Wallace's ambition and ability to make wildy delicious Mourvedres that expose an edge. From the extremely high altitude Santa Barbara Highlands vineyard in the far east of Santa Barbara county, it is pale and cloudy to the eye, yet powerful and pure to the nose and palate. Aromas of iron, peppery spice, watermelon, rosehips, cherry skins, and funk meet the mouth-watering, tingly palate of cranberry, sea salt, paprika, quinine, blood oranges, sour cherry, and stones. Natural and mineral rich with a powerful herbal component that keeps you drinking. Allow this wine to breathe and serve it with a gentle chill. Ariana Rolich

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $34.99

Dirty and Rowdy 2013 California Mourvèdre Familiar

"500 miles of California in a glass." Grapes from Santa Barbara, Amador, and Mendocino counties make up the California Familiar Mourvedre, which contains an accidental addition of Petite Sirah (around 8%). Fresh aromas of red plums, hibiscus flower, pepper, and tea leaf, with rich, pretty flavors of raspberries and stones on the palate, popping acidity, rugged earth, and a long-lasting finish. On day two the aromas gain warmth and spice, with clove, raspberry, gentle garrigue, and citrus oils; tannins grow supple and notes of cedar and forest floor round out the palate. Whereas the Mourvedre Especial barely budged after a day (it needs four!), the Familiar shows incredible depth and evolution. Highly recommended to decant! Ariana Rolich

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $39.99

Dirty and Rowdy 2012 Shake Ridge Ranch Mourvèdre

Ann Kraemer's Shake Ridge Ranch (Amador County) is widely admired for her impeccably farmed vineyards planted to a dozen varieties on quartz-rich basaltic soils. Dirty & Rowdy's 2012 Shake Ridge Mourvedre is herbaceous and brooding, with floral aromas of raspberry and wild blueberry, with strawberry seeds, coffee beans, and thyme; rich wild strawberry, black raspberries, and licorice root circle the palate alongside mineral soil, earthy nettles, and tarragon. Allow the tannins to unwind with some air and serve with lamb. A deep and savory wine. Ariana Rolich

  • Out of Stock
  • 0 in stock
  • $42.99

Broc Cellars 2013 Mendocino Cassia Grenache(s)

Chris Brockway's talent for making delicious, layered wines that expose the fresh essence of grapes and soils is in full effect in Broc Cellars' Cassia Grenache(s). (For fans of Broc's Cassia Rose, this is the red version.) It is Grenache Gris, Grenache Noir, or both, from 100+ year old dry farmed, had trained vines on the gravelly loam soils of Gibson Ranch in Mendocino's McDowell Valley. Black currant, herbal berry teas, pink and purple floral aromas ignite our thirst, followed by luscious flavors of deep yet delicate purple berries, dusky plum, brambly cassis, pink peppercorns, fresh thyme, juicy acidity, and a long-lasting mineral finish. I wholeheartedly recommend getting more than one bottle! Serve with a chill. Ariana Rolich

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $31.99

Wind Gap 2012 Alexander Valley Sceales Vineyard Grenache

Pouring this wine for fans of Wind Gap's Pinot Noirs and Syrahs is one of the best ways to spread the gospel of old vine Grenache! Fermented whole cluster and raised in concrete eggs, the Grenache from Sceales Vineyard's 100+ year old, dry farmed, head trained vines in sandy soils is perfumed, spicy, and sleek, with purple flowers, cinnamon, and apple skins on the nose, and concentrated yet refreshing flavors of crushed blueberry, red and black raspberries, peppercorns, and taut, gritty tannins. An elegant, long, and lifted Grenache that marries complexity with ease. Serve with a light chill. Ariana Rolich

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $39.99

Dirty and Rowdy 2013 Napa Valley Sémillon Yountville

California producers like Dirty and Rowdy and Forlorn Hope are really knocking Semillon out of the ball park, according to those of us who love the dense, spicy, herbal and mineral dimensions of serious Semillons from Australia and New Zealand. 2013 marked the earliest harvest yet for this Yountville Semillon, with both higher acidity and ripeness than the 2012. The majority of the grapes were fermented on their skins for two weeks then pressed off into old barrels; the rest were fermented and raised in concrete egg. The result is explosively dry and wild (as in wild flowers, wild herbs, and rocks... rocks in the wild). Bee pollen, jalapenos, oregano, and a hint of orange honey rise from the glass, with beeswax, orange zests, white flowers, chalky papaya, crunchy rocks, watercress, and white Pilsner beer on the palate. As special and lovely as this wine is at first sip (and sniff), we recommend allowing it time to open and reveal its deeper, even more delicious layers. Cheers to the fine folks at Dirty and Rowdy! Ariana Rolich

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $32.99

Broc Cellars 2013 Central Coast Vine Starr White (Grenache Blanc)

The 2013 Vine Starr White is Chris Brockway's third and last vintage of lustrous, herbal, and mineral-forward Grenache Blanc from Santa Barbara's biodynamically farmed Martian Ranch, so let's enjoy it while we can! Dewy florals and citrus pith aromas combine with flavors of fresh green herbs, lemon oil, bitter melon, tangy apricot, and a long, taut mineral finish. Proof that Grenache Blanc can be a refreshing apéritif at the end of a long day or a delicious dry white for fish, salads, and easy poultry dishes. Ariana Rolich

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $30.99

Wind Gap 2013 Russian River Valley Trousseau Gris

Wind Gap's Trousseau Gris is one of the wines that has earned Pax Mahle the permanent respect of wine geeks worldwide. Sourced from a rare planting of 30+ year old vines in Russian River Valley's Fanucchi Road Vineyard and raised in concrete eggs, it is vibrant, textured, mineral, and totally unique. The 2013 was picked earlier than previous vintages for a leaner, racier profile. Cool aromas of mint, stone, and green apples open up for tangy flavors of dried apricot, orange zests and brown spice, with a hint of tannin and lots of mineral length. Thought provoking and versatile with a range of seafood, pastas, poultry, and nutty cheeses. Ariana Rolich

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $22.99