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A Chilean Wine Like No Other Chilean Wines

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You may have noticed that we have a new attractive one-liter bottle on our shelves, in the South American section of the Reds. This is a Chilean wine that’s . . . not very Chilean. There’s a cool story behind it.

Louis-Antoine Luyt hails from France, and at the age of 22 he decided to get outta dodge and learn some Spanish. So, he went to Chile and started working as a dishwasher in a restaurant. Eventually, he took charge of the wine list there, and started getting more and more into wine as he studied more, with the help of the country’s only master sommelier.

Fast forward to the Aughts; Luyt is back in Chile, after working for some of the best natural winemakers in France, and he’s partnered up with a few investors to start a winery. But this won’t be just any winery; having seen that most Chilean wine is made in bulk, from conventional (non-organic) vineyards and with a lot of manipulation in the cellar so the wine tastes boring and homogenous, Luyt’s goal is to make a different kind of Chilean wine. Meaning, organic vineyards, indigenous grapes, no nasty chemicals, and the end result: a fresh, bright, lively wine that reflects terroir.

But 2010 was not a good harvest year for Chile. You may recall that there was a hugely destructive earthquake, in February – right when grape growers are about to pick their crop. Many vineyards were destroyed, including the ones Luyt hoped to source his grapes from. In response, his investors backed out, seeing no way to do what they had planned. But he refused to let go of his dream, and frantically searched until he found some vineyards to work with. That’s when Luyt found the vineyard with vines over 100-years-old that he uses to make the Pipeño; he pulled it together and made the wine, and kept the project alive.

The Pipeño is a whole liter of goodness, made from the red grape País, for just $20. We love it on its own, but it’s a perfect food wine that could be great as you hibernate. Come and get it!

words by Rachel Signer

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Perfect White Wines To Drink In Fall

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by Rachel Signer

 

It’s November, and the prime days of fall are here. Just because you’re getting out your sweaters and boots, doesn’t mean you also have to banish all but red wines from your table.

White wine can be delicious in the chilly afternoons and evenings of autumn, and is a perfect pairing for some of the best seasonal meals, like acorn squash, pumpkin ravioli, or roast chicken.

Here are some of our most exciting, affordable white wines at Henry’s, which are perfect for fall and early winter:

 

Arndorfer, Gruner Veltliner / Riesling $19

We love the bright, fresh, and lively wines of Martin and Anna Arndorfer, a husband-and-wife team in the Kamptal, northern Austria. This one, a blend of 80 percent Gruner Veltliner plus a boost of Riesling is bone-dry, snappy, and full of aromatic stonefruit notes. It will quickly become your Friday night favorite.

Pair With: Goat cheese, mushrooms, acorn squash

 

Ruth Lewandowski, “Chilion,” Cortese $32

Here are a few fun facts about the Lewandowski wines: they are made by Evan Lewandowski, in a winery in Utah, with grapes from California, and the name “Ruth” is inspired by the story of Ruth in the Bible. Ruth was a pagan Moabite who married into the Israeli tribe, and maybe Evan is a bit of an outsider in Utah, being a natural winemaker in a Mormon state. This wine, made from the Italian grape Cortese, sees a few days of skin contact – which is when white grapes are left with their skins on to develop some color and tannin – which makes it slightly more robust than most whites.

Pair With: Roast chicken, salami, pork, Alpine style cheeses

 

Chateau Fontvert, “Les Restanques,” Vermentino / Grenache Blanc $14

This wine is such a good value. Thanks to the combination of hand-harvested Vermentino and Grenache Blanc, from the warm climate of Southern France, it’s aromatic and rich, but also dry. That makes it ideal for just sipping on its own, as your weeknight Netflix wine, but it’s also perfect for just about any kind of light food.

Pair with: Pizza, pasta, Kimmy Schmidt

 

Haut Planty, Mouskadig Breizh $15

An oxidized Muscadet – whaaaa? We think it’s a little weird, too, but weird in a good way. Oxidation happens when air comes into contact with wine. It gives it a savory, unctuous flavor, and a bit of body – which can be quite nice, especially in cooler weather. Muscadet is a region in Western France that makes white wine from a grape called Melon de Bourgogne, which is dry, crisp, and full of fresh fruit notes like pear and peach. And the price is right, for sure.

Pair with: Vegetable lasagna, quinoa, fish, salty cheeses

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Tired of Rosé? Try a chilled, light red wine.

Around this time of the summer, not only are we all a little over the constant sun, but we’ve also probably drunk enough rosé to make us cringe at even the sight of the color pink.

The obvious choice would be to turn to white wine as a substitute. But you’d be missing out if you didn’t try one of warm weather’s greatest delights — and an ideal move for a backyard barbecue — which is chilling a bottle of light red, and glugging it happily.

That’s right, you can chill red wine! A solid 45 minutes in the fridge will do, and then you can let it warm up juuuuuust a bit before you pour a glass. We’ve got plenty of light chillable red choices at Henry’s, such as:

chilled reds

– “Lulu,” a very affordable and lovely Gamay from France ($15)

– “Grololo,” also from the Loire Valley of France, made from a yummy grape called Grolleau (it’s my personal fave!) ($22)

– “Pitchounet,” a blend of Southern French grapes that goes down way too easily ($20)

Domaine Grand, “Trousseau,” Cotes du Jura, a vibrant, light peppery red, perfect with cheese and charcuterie.  ($18)

By the way, you’ll notice that all of these bottles are French. It’s true that the French rule the art of drinking chilled light reds. But a lot of Italian bottles are great options, too, and some American wines, as well. Just ask us for a light red to drink on a hot day, and we’ll steer you in the right direction! See you soon.

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Pascal Pibaleau’s La Perlette

Pascale Pibaleau La Perlette
IT”S HERE! Pet-nat season is upon us! And, although we have a fantastic selection from different producers in the shop, we are very excited to feature Pascal Pibaleau.

Hailing from the Loire Valley of France, Pascal has been maintaining his vines biodynamically without chemicals or pesticides from the get go building upon a tradition of respect for the earth started in 1886.  Once in the winery, he aims to take a similar hands-off approach with natural yeast fermentation and no sulphur dioxide added. In short, this is deliciously pure juice.

La Perlette is made from a grape called Grolleau that only is grown in the Loire Valley. This wine is summer in a bottle! It is a lush, sparkling rose made in the traditional method with fast-moving bubbles and fresh strawberry fruit balanced by floral hibiscus and rose with a racy minerality.

Grab a bottle on the way home to enjoy on the rooftop or bring it to a picnic in the park. Either way you’ll love it and if you don’t know, now you know!

 

Get it while you can and ask about our other awesome Pet-nats as well!