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As summer comes, our wine taste buds change and we are looking for lighter reds, fresher and more vibrant whites and obsessing over delicious rosés. With the hot temperatures, I personally enjoy quite high acid white wines, complex rosés, light tannin reds and some fun bubbles. To simplify your life and weekend parties, we have created a summer wine case that aims at satisfying your summer wine taste buds, barbecues, and beach picnics. The case selection is comprised of three reds, three whites, four rosés, and two sparkling wines - most organic or biodynamic - from all over the world, and offered at an excellent price. Some of these items are limited. Sold out wines will be replaced by items of comparable quality and value. Caroline Coursant
Domaine de la Pépière lost most of their crop to frost in 2016 but was able to produce this excellent Muscadet using grapes normally reserved for the Clisson, Château Thébaud and Monnières-Saint Fiacre cuvées as well as fruit purchased from neighboring parcels, harvested and selected by Pépière. (This is the only wine from Pépière in 2016 except for a small amount of Clos des Briords and Gras Moutons.) The 2016 La Pépie shows classic Muscadet aromas of pear, citrus peel, almond and stone with a bit of lime-flower. The palate is dense, with nice ripeness, balanced with firm stony acidity, with flavors of dried pear, citrus, stone and white pepper and finishing with good length of citrusy acids and saline minerals. This is a serious Muscadet that echos the characteristics of the estate's top cuvées. The domaine lost almost 85% of the crop in 2016, but the small amount of wine they did produce is lovely. Our thanks to Marc, Remi and Gwènaëlle for this delicious and well-priced Muscadet.
Il Fortunato aced it with their Rosato Spumante; another lively sparkler produced from organic vineyards with only a minimal addition of sulfur. The nose is playful with a mix of bright berry fruits and fresh red cherries cut by tart apple skins. On the palate, a delicate mousse lifts the wine showing some weight, great acidity, and just touch of sugar. Absolutely lovely! Pair with charcuterie, simple pasta, or simply drink on its own. Andy Paynter
From a plot of very old Chenin Blanc vines, François' Brut NV is kept on the lees for 18 months before bottling. It has pretty apple, pear, floral and toasty flavors with good acidity balancing the fruit. The current cuvée is from 2014 and it's one of their best ever - a bit riper than usual with round but well defined fruit—a great alternative to Champagne, it's delicious as an apéritif before the meal or afterwards with apple pie. This is a great choice during the holidays - a real crowd-pleaser at a great price, before, after or during the meal!
Falanghina seems to be one of the great success stories of southern Italy, emerging from relative obscurity despite being a truly ancient variety into a nearly ubiquitous staple on the market. That has lead regrettably (and predictably) to any number of wines that fail to show the real virtues of the grape. Agnanum Falanghina is anything but predictable; produced from terraced vineyards of own-rooted vines ranging in age from 10 to 60 years old, possible only because of the particular soil of the area, the wine is pure and piercingly mineral. The nose is tart, showing pithy lemon and orange with delicate white florals, notes of mint and lemon balm and a characteristic hint of peach pit. The wine is almost airy on the palate with a fairly soft texture and fresh acidity showing a more deliberately stone fruit character of yellow peach and fresh apricot with a delicate saline finish. it is an obvious match to simple fish dishes but would be equally suited to a wide range of food: try it with goats milk cheese, olives, chicken, or egg dishes. Andy Paynter
I’ve learned in my short stint thus far in the wine industry to not look down on good fortune when it strikes. In this case it was on a recent trip to Italy that a bottle of Antonio Camillo Cilegiolo was ordered with great enthusiasm by another member of the table. What arrived was a wine that stands out from much of the wine of Maremma in the very best way; a wine made exclusively of a single native variety , organically farmed, fermented with native yeast, and judiciously spared new oak that was an absolute pleasure. Made from a 2 hectare plot of 50 year old vines this wine also stands out as the only varietal example of Cilegiolo I've had the chance to taste, which is a real shame as it is lovely. With aromas of roses, red plums, strawberries, woody herbs and a slight touch of black pepper the wine smells like it belongs in a garden on a hot summer day. The palate shows density without being cloying; notes of moist rich earth mingle with slightly dried red fruit and a whiff of oolong tea lifted by bright acidity and a surprising mineral finish. It is versatile as well, suited to a slight chill or a long decant and a perfect match to seared duck breast but equally fit for game, pork, mild cheese, vegetarian dishes, and rich tomato sauces. Andy Paynter
From 40 to 80 year-old vines on clay over limestone soils around Benais in Bourgueil. Certified organic since 1965! By now the great work of Stephane Guion needs no introduction to CSW customers, but the quality of his 2014 Cuvée Prestige deserves special attention. The wine is perfectly balanced, with the high acidity and mineral content always present in Stephane's wines framed by precisely ripe and supple fruit with depth and elegance. The aromas show raspberry and blackberry liqueur with hints of dark chocolate, earth and licorice, ripe but bright. Supple, ripe berry fruits on the palate with fine tannins and citrusy acids, deep and intense but forward and delicious now. This wine will drink beautifully over the next 20 years or longer and is highly recommended.
A beautiful Bandol rosè, primarily Mourvedre with Cinsault and Grenache. The Mourvedre is pressed and run off directly, the Cinsault and Grenache undergo 24 hours of skin contact. Certified organic grapes from the Bronzo family vineyard in Le Castellet. This is a complex, perfectly balanced wine, a bit brighter than the 2015, with lovely aromas of raspberry, peach, blood orange, rose and spice. The palate is dense with cherry and raspberry fruit, citrus and stone flavors, ripe and full with bright balancing acidity with terrific density and length and a bit of ripe cherry in the finish. Delicious now - please decant or open 1 hour in advance - this will improve over the next few years. Perfect with grilled tuna, Salade Nicoise, pork and chicken, bouillabaisse, of course, and mild cheeses.
Every year I feel drawn towards rosatos that are more deeply colored and have a bit more structure, built more for food than for quaffing. The rosato of G. B. Burlotto, a blend of Nebbiolo, Pelaverga, and Barbera, fits the bill particularly well. The nose is redolent of brambly berry fruit with red raspberries and strawberries, woody herbs, and violets. The palate is structured with noticeable but restrained tannin and crisp acidity showing more of a black pepper or spicy character and a mineral finish. This is definitely a wine for the table! Try it with grilled sausages and peppers, pork chops dressed with sage, roast chicken, or seared artichokes. Andy Paynter
Gros Ventre inaugurated 2016 with a brand new rosé in their lineup. The pale salmon flesh hue of this Gamay and Pinot Noir blend hides a quite voluptuous wine on the palate with macerated strawberry, strawberry tops, and hibiscus flavors. The granite and volcanic soils the grapes were planted on magnify the texture and juiciness on the palate considerably. Jonas Mendoza
100% Hondarribi Zuri from Agerre, third-generation wine growers in Getaria, whose refreshing, classic Txakoli ignites our thirst every year around this time. It is fermented with native yeasts, so you get salty, earthy, delicate notes without the confected character that pervades Txakolis made with commercial yeasts. Lime blossoms, brine, savory minerals, a hint of sweet smoke and dried herbs, sea salt air, and green apple acidity invigorate the appetite, making a perfect apéro next to snacks of goat cheese, oysters, and shrimp. Ariana Rolich
What a delicious wine! This fresh and bright wine is 100% Gamay Noir, sourced from four organically farmed vineyards located in Willamette Valley. Kate Norris and Tom Monroe have great respect for this Burgundian grape and it shows. The vinification varies by vineyard to enable the best expression of the grape (carbonic maceration and traditional fermentation). Native yeasts are used and the wine is aged both in stainless steel tank and in French oak barrel.The wine is superb on the nose, reminiscent of classic floral Beaujolais wines. The first flavor that came to my mind was fresh and dried dark roses with slight baked rhubarb, spices and iron undertones. The bouquet of raspberries, strawberries and black cherries is full on the nose and mouth. The wine is beautifully structured with great acidity and minerality (volcanic clay soil with marine sedimentary overlay) with minimal tannin. This is a juicy, lean, fresh wine - perfect for the summer time served slightly chilled. Pair it with a chicken and goat cheese salad with strawberry vinaigrette. This will be a match made in heaven. Caroline Coursant