Exceptional Excellent Very Good
This week we feature three bordeaux to demonstrate the value this historic and still very important region can offer. And since spring is coming, here are two white wines to help you relax and think of flowers, rejuvenation and new beginnings.
Chateau des Laurets 2014/2015
Puisseguin Saint-Emilion, Bordeaux, France, $37
Hailing from the Right Bank, this delightful blend of merlot and cabernet franc is savory and delicious, with flavors of dark plum, cherry and earth. I tasted the 2014, generally considered a lighter vintage, and the wine is delicious. The distributor is now selling the 2015, a riper, bolder vintage. A fun afternoon could be spent comparing the two; both should have good availability in the market. Alcohol by volume: 14 percent.
Imported by Wilson Daniels, distributed in the District and Maryland by Bacchus, in Virginia by RNDC: Available in the District at Barmy Wines & Liquors, Rodman’s. Available in Maryland at Bin 201 Wine Sellers in Annapolis; Eddie’s of Roland Park, North Charles Fine Wine & Spirits and Wine Source in Baltimore; Iron Bridge Wine Co. in Columbia. Available in Virginia at Dominion Wine and Beer in Falls Church, Mermaid Winery in Virginia Beach.
Stefano Accordini Pastel Bianco Veronese 2018
Made from garganega, the primary white grape grown in the Veneto region of northeastern Italy (think soave), this is a delightful, beguiling wine. It flirts with aromas of white flowers, then seduces with a touch of honey-roasted peach. Pair it with seafood or light pasta dishes, but be sure to save some to savor by itself later, as it opens up and reassures you that life can still be wonderful. ABV: 12.5 percent.
Imported and distributed by Simon N Cellars: Available in the District at A. Litteri, Via Umbria. Available in Virginia at the Italian Store (Lyon Village) in Arlington, Tastings of Charlottesville, Unwined (Alexandria, Belleview), the Wine Outlet (Great Falls, McLean, Vienna).
Chateau La Freynelle Cabernet Sauvignon 2016
This wine is 100 percent cabernet sauvignon, unusual for Bordeaux, and especially for the Entre-Deux-Mers, the region between the Garonne and Dordogne rivers, where merlot is king among red grapes. No matter — Veronique Barthe, the seventh generation and first woman of the Barthe family to run the estate — has crafted a delicious wine. Black currant flavors dominate over a core of graphite minerality that gives the wine heft and backbone, and carries it to a satisfying finish. Enjoy this with grilled steaks or hearty stews. ABV: 13.5 percent.
Imported by Aquitaine Wine USA, distributed by M. Touton Selection: Available in the District at Calvert Woodley, Central Liquors, District Liquors, Riverside Liquors, Rodman’s. Available in Maryland at Fishpaws Marketplace in Arnold, Harrison’s Wine & Liquors and Town & Country Wines Liquor Etc. in Easton.
Disznoko Tokaji Dry Furmint 2018
Furmint is the grape of Hungary’s marvelous sweet tokaji wines. The dry version tastes crisp and refreshing, with an underlying complexity that waits for you to pay attention before revealing itself. This wine is beguilingly delicious, and is worth your attention. ABV: 13.5 percent.
Imported and distributed by M. Touton Selection: Available in the District at Calvert Woodley, Central Liquors, District Liquors, MacArthur Beverages, Rodman’s, Sherry’s Wine & Spirits. Available in Maryland at Chester River Wine & Cheese in Chestertown, Jason’s Wine & Spirit in Ellicott City, Viniferous in Frederick. Available in Virginia at Specials Wine Seller in Kilmarnock.
Chateau La Mothe du Barry 2018
Bordeaux Supérieur, France, $14
Here’s a perennial favorite of mine for the delicious fruit and sheer value it offers. This is also from the Entre-Deux-Mers, but the estate is close to Saint-Emilion, so some of the juju apparently wafts over on the wind from its prestigious neighbor. Certified organic viticulture. ABV: 14.5 percent.
Imported and distributed by Elite: Widely available at independent markets and wine stores in the District, Maryland and Virginia.
Availability information is based on distributor records. Wines might not be in stock at every listed store and might be sold at additional stores. Prices are approximate. Check Winesearcher.com to verify availability, or ask a favorite wine store to order through a distributor.