wine of the night: 2009 Ermitage du Pic Saint Loup 'Tour de Pierres'

A natural, unfiltered wine grown biodynamically, this Syrah, Grenache, Mouvedre blend drinks well and a great value at only $18. The three brother operation at Ermitage de Pic Saint Loup has been biodynamic since 1999 and their goal is to show the terrior of their high altitude Languedoc vineyards through their wines. Ermitage makes five wines, this blend labelled as Tour de Pierres. Its bright and balanced, and shows especially well when paired with food. I found it delicious with roasted tomatoes over fried polenta and goat cheese!

It's always surprising to me how people respond to the conversation of biodynamic wines. As a sustainability consultant by day and simply a person who prefers natural over heavily processed, it's an obvious choice for me. I also find these wines more interesting- both in the glass and the story behind the bottle. But so many people either dismiss the notion of natural wine as nonsense (usually condescendingly) or they simply don't understand the various terms and meanings behind 'organic/natural/biodynamic.' Perhaps thats a blog post for other time! But for now, let me leave you with this. If you want to venture into the biodynamic wine world, start with this Tour de Pierres, why not!? It's not a funky wine, just a great Syrah blend. You'll feel great that the guys behind this wine are making sure that you drink great wine without added acids, no artificial yeasts, and no harmful pesticides or fertilizers.


holiday wine style

I'm a big fan of literally dressing for an occasion. So for all those holiday parties, what could be more fun than drinking some sparkling while being covered is in.. you got it.. sparkles! And the better the bubbles, the better the time! I mean it, good champagne just makes me so happy! So whatever your sparkling wine of choice, make sure to pair with some equally as peppy!

Here are some that I have enjoyed...



wine of the night: 2010 Quattro Mani Piemonte Barbera

Another nice simple wine for those of you who are trying to conserve a bit during the weeknights of this holiday season. This 2010 Barbera by Quattro Mani, which means four hands (hmm, two people???) is a great deal at $14. Most importantly, it drinks well, a bit better than $14 in my opinion, and the grapes are harvested sustainability. Not complex, but pleasant with the acidy and structure that I would expect from a Barbera. Great with an easy pasta dinner, or in my case, the standard fried egg sandwich.

Two Dudes Quattro Mani produces wines with the help of celebrity winemakers, using sustainable and biodynamic wine making practices, that express a regions terroir through their more traditional grapes. They have even been working with Movia, a winery well known for their dedication to biodynamic principles- and pretty fantastic wine.


wine of the night: 2010 Iconic Wines Heroine Chardonnay

What a bottle! Hands down my absolute most favorite label I have ever come across. This Chardonnay is the first wine from the guys at Iconic Wines. Although you shouldn't judge wines by the label, let this be your exception. An awesome label and equally awesome wine. This white is a blend of 4 barrels of Chardonnay, each containing juice from grapes of varying harvest dates and different levels of malolactic fermentation. See the breakdown on Iconic's site (www.iconicwine.com/).

Iconic Wines 2010 Heroine Chardonnay $33.99

Heroine a is high acid, mineral driven Chardonnay with a lingering finish of lemons. There a nice amount of complexity too, which I suspect is from the varying levels of malo and that this wines ages on the lees for 10 months.

And did I mention that there are only 104 cases of this juice!! That's right; so find it, grab it, and enjoy it!!


wine of the night: Tintero Rosso

Easy going and modest. That pretty much sums up this Italian red. It's bright, dry and just a pleasant bottle to pour after a busy day. And it's super affordable at $12 a bottle. I drank this wine with triscuits and gorgonzola, and sometimes that is all you need!