Category Archives: Curious Picks

What’s the Deal with Malbec?

Let me guess…first thing you think of when you hear “Malbec” is…Argentina? Boom! Admittedly, at Klaustur Bar I have been strict about not offering any Argentine or Chilean wines. I feel that because there is such great volume of wine produced by these budding countries that there is a large variance on the quality of […]
Read More »

Sagrantino Passito, Umbria Italy

What a magical, dense, juicy, rich, sweet wine. Wines made from dried grapes will be concentrated and usually sweeter. If you are not familiar with this style of wine, you may be surprised to know that this method of making rich, honeyed wines has existed for 3000 years, and exists in the majority of winemaking countries. […]
Read More »

Vin de Paille, Jura France

Another blockbuster surprise, and proof that good things come in small packages. Vin de Paille is a style of wine translated as “straw wine”. This is a reference to bunches of grapes collected off the vine and historically dried to raisins in straw baskets to condense and sweeten the resulting wine. This is a historical […]
Read More »

Henriques & Henriques, Madeira Portugal

It is amazing to taste an unfamiliar style of wine, such as Madeira, and to be blown away by the richness and complexity. Madeiran wine has a rich history. The little island off the coast of Africa played a strategic role for extending the reach of Portuguese explorers to undiscovered lands in the 15th century […]
Read More »

Surani Primitivo, Puglia Italy

I’m guessing that you either know Primitivo wine and love it for it’s bright fruit and floral notes, or you don’t know it yet but will want to try it very soon. Primitivo grape is grown mainly in Puglia in Italy, i.e. the “heel of the boot”. Primitivo and Zinfandel grapes are clones of the Crljenak […]
Read More »

Paul Mas Carignan, Languedoc France

Southern France, and the greater Languedoc-Rousillon wine producing region, has some great experimentation in making wines from so many different varieties of grapes. Carignan is one of my favorite from this region for full-flavor dry red wines. Surprisingly light body, dry. Nose of raspberry, buttered popcorn, cocoa. On the palate sour cherry, coffee, and graphite.

Solms Delta Chenin Blanc, South Africa

Chenin Blanc grape in South Africa is also known as “Steen”. This wine comes from the Franschhoek region. It is very different than the round, opulent, bruised apple Chenin Blanc that I’ve tried from Loire Valley, France. The Solms Delta bottle was a bit grassy and herbal, more on the savory end of the spectrum […]
Read More »

Chinon, Loire Valley France

Quite a curiosity, and possibly an acquired taste. The areas of Chinon and Bourgueil in Loire Valley, France make red wines from the Cabernet Franc grape. Light body, mineral. Red rose, buttered pecan, and tart raspberry on the nose. Palate of rose water, petrol, and mineral. I don’t care for Cabernet Franc myself, I tend […]
Read More »

Muscat Beaume de Venise Blanc

Vin Doux Naturel: a fortified style of wine produced for over 800 years that halts the fermentation of the grapes by adding white grape spirit (aka grapa). This allows the grape juice to keep a fair amount of residual sugar, yielding a sweet wine with an opulent bouquet of fruit aromas and perfume. Full body, […]
Read More »

Rueda Verdejo

I love the white wines coming out of Spain right now. Spicy, crisp, and a bit of funk. This Rolland & Galarreta wine from the Rueda region is made with the Verdejo grape. While Verdejo is better known for its use in fortified wines, like Madeiran wine, it can make some full body, aromatic, fruity whites. […]
Read More »