3 Wine Tastings - Week of August 21

3 Wine Tastings - Week of August 21

Aug 22nd 2017


Another Week of Celestial Wine Tastings

We hope you all caught a glimpse of the eclipse on Monday! We are excited to share wines with you on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday this week. They are all excellent examples of terroir from the South of France, Tuscany, and Spain; and distinctly show how the concept of terroir affect the outcome of the wine.
Join us on Wednesday evening from 5 pm to 7 pm to taste through & take home these super versatile wines from the Languedoc-Roussillon.

1) 2015 Corbières Chateau de Cabriac Tradition Blanc $13.40

2) 2014 Corbières Chateau de Cabriac Tradition Rouge $13.95

3) 2014 Collioure Domaine du Mas Blanc Piloums $13.99

4) 2013 Cabardès Château La Mijane $16.79

Don't let the prices fool you into thinking they're low-quality wine! Inexpensive though they are, these wines drink far above their $13-$16 price point.

A little information about the wines we'll be tasting:

The Cabriac Blanc is a blend of Grenache Blanc, Rolle, and Roussanne. Completely varietally correct, with richness and aromas of Asian Pear and White Peach from the Grenache Blanc. Rolle (aka Vermentino) adds a bright, mineral citrus spine. The addition of Roussanne adds a savory perfume and density to the palate. The wine is beautifully balanced, with precise acidity and while the wine is rich, it isn't oily or cumbersome.

Corbières is the main appellation of the Languedoc with 87 villages, 38,000 acres of vineyards, and 11 different terroirs. It's a region that produces a significant amount of wine for everyday consumption. Regarding quality, wines from Corbières have a considerable range. Its sheer size and output work directly against producing wines of high quality. However, there are always exceptions. Chateau de Cabriac sits amidst hillsides of vines and pines at the foot of Mount Alaric. They have pockets of limestone that sit on sandstone, and their northern vine exposure protects the grapes from the heat while promoting gradual maturation. The red wine we'll be tasting is a blend of Syrah, Mourvedre, Grenache, and Carignan. It's a fantastic example of a high-quality wine from Corbières complete with all the classic earthy, spicy, rustic reliability of the Languedoc.

The third wine we'll taste is from Collioure. Collioure shares the same geographical boundaries as Banyuls, but that AOC status is specifically for the non-fortified red wines of the area while AOC Banyuls refers to fortified red wines in the same area. The 2014 Domaine du Mas Blanc Piloums wine is a lighter expression of red wine from the region. It has all the hallmark fruit and spice components of Collioure minus the weight.

Finally, the fourth wine we'll taste on Wednesday is from Château La Mijane, AOC/AOP Cabardès. Cabardès is a newly designated AOP (as of 1999), and the only one in the Languedoc to mandate the blending in of Bordeaux varietals. The order to blend varietals is because Cabardès is the most Westerly AOC of the Languedoc, and is pretty close to the most Easterly AOC's of France's South West. Basically, because of climate and location, both Bordeaux and Rhône varietals are at home here. Consequently, this wine consists of 60% Grenache and 40% Merlot. The vineyards sit in the shadow of Carcassonne. Therefore, the wine is aromatically intense with a wallop of black and red fruit alongside a mineral and long-finishing palate.

Taste the Beauty of Ampeleia at Champion Wine Cellars Friday, August 25th From 6 pm to 8 pm.


There's so much to say about these wines. They're beautiful, elegant, pure expressions of terroir, and they've been haunting us ever since we first tasted them. This Friday, we invite you to taste them for yourselves. We are thrilled to have an exceptional guest, Advanced Sommelier Paul Swanson of Rn74 to share these gems with you.

A little about the winery:

Ampeleia resides in the Colline Metallifere; the name translates to "hills that produce metals." The Colline Metallifere are hills within the upper Maremma. And Maremma is located in Tuscany, Southern Tuscany to be more precise. While the Northern part of Tuscany (Chianti Classico) has a developed wine tourism industry and lots of public cellars, Maremma is noticeably less visited by tourists, and few cellars are even open to the public. Maremma is a wine region "for serious wine lovers," and is home to some of the mythical wines of Super Tuscans Sassicaia and Ornellaia.

Founded in 2002 with collaboration from Elisabetta Foradori, Thomas Widmann, and Giovanni Podini. The estate aspires to represent the diversity and potential of Maremma with a focus on Cabernet Franc and Alicante Nero (Tuscan biotype of Grenache), and the variability of altitude, soil type, and microclimate. While Ampeleia owns 130 hectares of property, they only plant 35 hectares to vineyards in an attempt to keep the landscape intact and promote biodiversity

The three terroirs of Ampeleia:

1) Ampeleia di Sopra: 70 hectares with only 15 hectares under vine. The largest land unit of the estate, and between 450 and 600 meters above sea level. Mostly planted to Cabernet Franc. Chestnut groves dominate the landscape.

2) Ampeleia di Mezzo: 35 hectares of property with only 10 hectares under vine. Sangiovese land. 250-350 meters above sea level, and surrounded by cork oak woods. Carignan and Grenache grow here as well.

3) Ampeleia di Sotto: 15 hectares with 10 hectares under vine. These plots are closest to the sea and show the most Mediterranean character. Grenache dominates here, and the area is about 200 meters above sea level.
And Last, But Not Least, We Invite You To Try Wines From Spain On Saturday. All Day. 11 AM to 5 PM. Spanish Wines + Spanish Tapas. What Could Be Better?


This Saturday will be a first for our tastings at Champion Wine Cellars Greenwood! We'll be having our first tasting with food! And as the title suggests, we'll be tasting Spanish wine along with Spanish tapas. We will have a small fee of $5 to cover the cost of food.

The sardines in olive oil ($4 per individual can), Marcona almonds ($6 per tub), mixed olives in herbs ($5 per jar), and Boquerones ($8 per paquete) will be included in that value, and available to purchase along with any tasty wines you'd like to bring home.

As for wine: We are going to taste through 6 Spanish wines!

Jané Ventura Brut Nature Cava Reserva 2014 $17.85
Fourth generation family specializing in brut nature cava from the beginning (1914). Located in El Vendrell (Baix Penedès, Tarragona) with vineyards in La Bisbal del Penedès and Montmell. The rugged terrain of the area and the influence of the sea creates Jané Ventura Cava's that are both complex and intense. Capable of pairing with delicate and savory foods, this is a Cava that is in limited supply and delicious.

Carramimbre Verdejo 2015 $12.75
Carramimbre Verdejo is from Rueda and sits on clay, limestone and gravel soils. The aromatics of this wine are intense, with notes of peach, vegetable, and fennel jumping out of the glass. The wine has quite a long finish and is capable of pairing with foods that have a bit of spice to them.

Castillo de Mendoza Vitaran Blanco $14.65
A blend of Viura (aka Macabeo) and Malvasia Blanco from La Rioja Alta; a family dream come true in 1994. The Mendoza-Cadarso family were several generations in as grape growers in the region, and finally realized their own dream of being vignerons in 1994. The wine is fermented in barrel and then aged for 6 months. Peach, pear, smoky aromas with a touch of spice waft from the glass while the palate is both fresh, balanced and intense.

Finca Viladellops Garnatxa 2015 $13.95
Olive and almond trees surround the property, which sits next to the Castle of Olèrdola in Penedès. The winery was founded in 1877 until 1980, then re-opened in 1999 with the current generation of the Desvall's family; who started up the project of revitalizing Mediterranean wines by focusing on Garnatxa for red varietals and Xarello for white varietals.

Valdecampana Ribera del Duero Crianza $17.95
The Ribera del Duero was once only known as the home of Vega Sicilia and now (30 years later) challenges the Rioja for the title of Best Wines in Spain. The Valdecampana Crianza is aged in a typical way; 1 year in barrels (Romanian and American Oak), and 1 year in bottle. The wine is 100% Tinta del País aka Tempranillo. Beautiful, sophisticated, warm and powerful. Loads of blackberry, currant, tobacco, and vanilla.

Pardas Negre Franc $21.85
The Negre Franc is Pardas base wine. It's an assemblage of different grapes (Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Sumoll), and vineyards over the estate to create a snapshot view into their terroir. It is lovely. There are no pesticides used here. Nor are there herbicides. Fermentation and malolactic fermentation occurs naturally. They are located in Penedès, more specifically in Can Comas. And to address the varietal, Sumoll: An indigenous varietal to Penedès almost extinct a few years ago. The rare varietal is also found in the Canary islands. Similar to Nebbiolo of Northern Italy, this grape is red fruit-driven, rustic, with notes of undergrowth, high acid, and loves oak.

This Saturday will be a first for our tastings at Champion Wine Cellars Greenwood! We'll be having our first tasting with food! And as the title suggests, we'll be tasting Spanish wine along with Spanish tapas. We will have a small fee of $5 to cover the cost of food.

The sardines in olive oil ($4 per individual can), Marcona almonds ($6 per tub), mixed olives in herbs ($5 per jar), and Boquerones ($8 per paquete) will be included in that value, and available to purchase along with any tasty wines you'd like to bring home.

As for wine: We are going to taste through 6 Spanish wines!

Jané Ventura Brut Nature Cava Reserva 2014 $17.85
Fourth generation family specializing in brut nature cava from the beginning (1914). Located in El Vendrell (Baix Penedès, Tarragona) with vineyards in La Bisbal del Penedès and Montmell. The rugged terrain of the area and the influence of the sea creates Jané Ventura Cava's that are both complex and intense. Capable of pairing with delicate and savory foods, this is a Cava that is in limited supply and delicious.

Carramimbre Verdejo 2015 $12.75
Carramimbre Verdejo is from Rueda and sits on clay, limestone and gravel soils. The aromatics of this wine are intense, with notes of peach, vegetable, and fennel jumping out of the glass. The wine has quite a long finish and is capable of pairing with foods that have a bit of spice to them.

Castillo de Mendoza Vitaran Blanco $14.65
A blend of Viura (aka Macabeo) and Malvasia Blanco from La Rioja Alta; a family dream come true in 1994. The Mendoza-Cadarso family were several generations in as grape growers in the region, and finally realized their own dream of being vignerons in 1994. The wine is fermented in barrel and then aged for 6 months. Peach, pear, smoky aromas with a touch of spice waft from the glass while the palate is both fresh, balanced and intense.

Finca Viladellops Garnatxa 2015 $13.95
Olive and almond trees surround the property, which sits next to the Castle of Olèrdola in Penedès. The winery was founded in 1877 until 1980, then re-opened in 1999 with the current generation of the Desvall's family; who started up the project of revitalizing Mediterranean wines by focusing on Garnatxa for red varietals and Xarello for white varietals.

Valdecampana Ribera del Duero Crianza $17.95
The Ribera del Duero was once only known as the home of Vega Sicilia and now (30 years later) challenges the Rioja for the title of Best Wines in Spain. The Valdecampana Crianza is aged in a typical way; 1 year in barrels (Romanian and American Oak), and 1 year in bottle. The wine is 100% Tinta del País aka Tempranillo. Beautiful, sophisticated, warm and powerful. Loads of blackberry, currant, tobacco, and vanilla.

Pardas Negre Franc $21.85
The Negre Franc is Pardas base wine. It's an assemblage of different grapes (Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Sumoll), and vineyards over the estate to create a snapshot view into their terroir. It is lovely. There are no pesticides used here. Nor are there herbicides. Fermentation and malolactic fermentation occurs naturally. They are located in Penedès, more specifically in Can Comas. And to address the varietal, Sumoll: An indigenous varietal to Penedès almost extinct a few years ago. The rare varietal is also found in the Canary islands. Similar to Nebbiolo of Northern Italy, this grape is red fruit-driven, rustic, with notes of undergrowth, high acid, and loves oak.
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