Paris Madrid Grocery PicnicWord is, today is the last real day of summer.   Stop in and grab a picnic – a bottle of rosé wine, charcuterie, and cheese to enjoy on this 80-degree day.

The warm weather is also bringing on padrón peppers, so come and get them now…   it may be the last chance with the cooler nighttime temperatures.

Amontillado sherryAmontillado Sherry Tasting – Tomorrow (Friday, September 29), from 2 pm to 6 pm, we’ll be pouring samples of three Amontillado sherries.  Ranging from dry to medium sweet, Amontillados are an excellent aperitif, and delicious with seafood, mushrooms or cured meats.  With more weight than a white wine, they are also extra satisfying in fall.  We will continue the tasting on Saturday if we have samples left, and it’s free.

ChimichurriChimichuirri dry rub is back in stock.  Customers love this blend of parsley, garlic, onion, red chili, pepper, oregano, cilantro, sea salt, and cumin.   Mix the rub with olive oil and vinegar (proportions to taste) and then spread it on steaks.   Marinate the beef for 3 hours or overnight, then grill the meat and serve.   Chimichurri is also terrific on swordfish.

New Red Bordeaux Wines Arrive.

Hearty red wine season is right around the corner.  Yesterday I tasted 20 red Bordeaux wines, including the showstopper 2005 Cos d’Estournel St. Estèphe ($387.00, available by special order).   The top red Bordeaux wines require infinite patience and cellaring to reach their full potential, as well as a financial investment.   But when at their peak, these are serious wines that invite reflection and are a memorable delight for the senses.

There are also many terrific reds from Bordeaux that can be enjoyed now at a lower sticker price.   We carry many excellent choices, including the new left bank reds described below, that arrived today.   A notable fact about Bordeaux is its cool climate which results in somewhat lower alcohol levels.

Larose Trintaudon Bordeaux 2010Château Larose-Trinaudon, Les Hauts de Trintaudon Haut-Médoc 2010  ($11.99)   2010 was an exceptional vintage in Bordeaux, and even modest bottles from this harvest should be snapped up.  Les Hauts de Trintaudon 2010 is an unoaked blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon and 40% Merlot.   Medium to full-bodied it offers up aromas of red fruit with hints of earth.  Well structured with ripe tannins, its ripe black cherry fruit has length and balanced acidity.  Serve this super tasty red with lamb burgers or grilled chicken.

Château Larose-Trinaudon, Haut-Médoc Cru Bourgeois 2010 ($18.99)   The big brother to Les Hauts de Trintaudon, it’s also 60% Cabernet Sauvignon and 40% Merlot, but aged in French oak for 12 months. Shows beautifully ripened black and red fruit with notes of vanilla spice.   Round and dense with noticeable grip, it has a hint of earth.   Very fresh with a silky texture, this is a great value.

Chateau LoudenneChâteau Loudenne Médoc 2011 (SPECIAL PRICE $24.99, regularly $27.99).   50% Cabernet Sauvignon and 50% Merlot, aged 16 months in French oak.  A concentrated wine that opens up with air, its ample fruit notes show nuances of mineral and spice.  Smooth and charming, it is well-structured with ripe tannins.   Mineral-driven, full-bodied with hints of vanilla, serve this elegant wine with Wagyu tenderloin.

Chateau de Pez 2010Château de Pez St. Estèphe Grand Vin 2010 (SPECIAL PRICE $55.00, regularly $59.00)  Created in the 15th century, Château de Pez is the oldest domain in Saint-Estèphe. The Pontac family, who also created Haut-Brion, gave Pez its vineyards.   2010 Château de Pez is a cuvèe of 52.5% Cabernet Sauvignon and the rest Merlot, fermented in oak vats and aged in 40% new oak barrels for 12 months.   Its juicy red fruit offers layered nuances of mineral, vanilla, and dust already well-integrated.  Beautifully structured with firm tannins.    “Very refined.”   92 points Wine Advocate