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          Take a look through our past articles pertaining to wine, tastings, and events. These will help you become a well-rounded wine-o!

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          March 26, 2022

          Salena’s Flavor of the Week – Oriol Artigas ‘SOS #10’ 2020

          In a devastating blow to all of his vineyards in 2020, Oriol Artigas lost his entire crop of fruit that year to hail, frost and mildew. This shocking occurrence led him to send out a call of distress to a few friends, setting in motion a remarkable opportunity for a small community of viticulturists in Catalunya to come together and help their dear friend. This 'hail mary' allowed Artigas to purchase enough grapes to produce an exclusive, completely singular line of extremely limited wines under the appropriate name, 'SOS.' These are the wines that saved Oriol Artigas.
          March 17, 2022

          Producer Spotlight: Nicolas Carmarans

          This was a tasting experience so revelatory that we're still talking about it months later! Simply put, the wine blew us away. It was beautifully perfumed: flowers cut with spice and a palate so bright and crisp it defied expectation. We had been familiar with Nicolas' wine, but the shop had been limited to just one cuvée. After meeting with Steven however, the stars aligned. He saw the spark of joy in our eyes for these spectacular wines and four months after, we've finally received a treasure trove of bottles, including the extremely rare 'Mauvais du Temps.'
          March 16, 2022

          Producer Profile: Nanclares y Prieto

          What Alberto Nanclares and Silvia Prieto have done with these wines has brought Albariño and the white wines of Rías Baixas to heights not previously achieved in the region. The closest comparisons I can think of are what Vincent Dauvissat and François Raveneau have done in Chablis; winemakers that seem to have a deeper, more profound ability to lift their terroir above and beyond what has historically been thought possible.
          March 12, 2022

          Salena’s Flavor of the Week – Domaine La Taupe 2-Pack

          Today's wines achieve that illusive and delicate balance of packing gobs of flavor and concentration into lithe, fresh frames. Although they are grown within close proximity of each other in the cool Loire Valley, they are opposite sides of the same coin. A Cabernet Franc delivering floral elegance and precision while the Malbec is brooding and full of dark, spicy, earthy fruit. Opposing profiles, but ones that fit together seamlessly.
          March 9, 2022

          La Perdida

          The wines of La Perdida would be staples on our shelves if there was even close to enough to go around. These, like all of winemaker Nacho Gonzales' wines, are low production, intimate cuvées that awe aficionados and amateurs alike. With a total production of only a few thousand bottles per year, we are lucky to get the small allocation that we do.
          March 5, 2022

          Salena’s Flavor of the Week – Domaine de Marquiliani ‘Gris de Marquiliani’ 2020

          This featherweight is so pale and crystalline in color you wouldn't know it was a Rosé if not for it being written on the label. A paradox in and of itself, this rosé 'Gris' shimmers a pale silver color in the glass but still manages to pack a punch, delivering complexities and flavor that defy its appearance.
          March 3, 2022

          Lamoresca

          Filippo Rizzo makes 'true wine'. That's what he calls the wines of Lamoresca, his one other love besides his wife and partner Nancy. What does it mean to make true wine? For Filippo, it's a matter of working and caring for his vines not just as a monoculture, but as a living farm and an extension of his home. Rizzo's vineyards were purchased after a career selling natural wine, he being one of the first natural wine merchants outside of Paris at the beginning of the movement. Eventually deciding it was time to return to his roots in Sicily, and has never looked back.
          March 2, 2022

          Exclusive: 2015 Goyo Garcia ‘Finca Vinas de Arcilla’

          For those of you who have been following along for the past few years, you've probably sensed my enthusiasm about what's happening on Spain's wine scene. A country steeped in viticultural history, Spain has been reinvigorated in the past five years by a handful of intrepid, forward-thinking winemakers who have ironically looked to their country's past for inspiration. Today's wine, from Goyo Garcia Viadero in Ribera del Duero, captures this 'new traditional' approach perfectly.
          February 25, 2022

          Salena’s Flavor of the Week – Pirouettes ‘Tutti Frutti de Stéphane’ 2019

          Today's wine is an Alsatian stunner from one of the coolest natural winemaking co-ops in France, Les Vins Pirouettes. With purity and terroir at the forefront, this unique cuvée from a one-of-a-kind project over delivers on flavor, texture and excitement! The first sip of this extraordinary wine made me jump out of my seat and do a little dance!
          February 23, 2022

          Exclusive: 2016 Clos du Jaugueyron ‘Nout’ Margaux

          If you look hard enough, tucked amongst the grandiose chateaux of Bordeaux, you'll find families holding firm to the traditions of this historic land. While they've witnessed their neighbor's land get snatched up by multi-national and luxury brands, they've stood firm; knowing the wines they produce are some of the most extraordinary in all of Bordeaux.
          February 22, 2022

          Producer Spotlight: Peter Lauer

          Tucked away on the river Saar (a Mosel tributary) is a celebrity in the German winemaking world, and his name is Florian Lauer. Though his father's name remains the face of the weingut, Florian has done more than craft a niche for himself in the Saar, and has far surpassed the moniker of rising star. Here at Monarch we recently got the chance to hop on a Zoom call with PJ Rosenberg of Vom Boden, the importer of these wines and a true advocate. He led us through the wines of Weingut Peter Lauer one by one, giving us a real sense of the winery, the town of Ayl, and the land surrounding it.
          February 16, 2022

          Exclusive: 2020 Baurdy ‘La Croix Boisee’ Chinon Blanc

          How can a white wine made in a land of iconic reds be this good? At face value, this concept would be literally unbelievable. This white dot on a red map is not only one of the best Chenin Blancs I taste year in and year out, but has come to be an all-time favorite white of mine. Perhaps I shouldn't be so surprised as it's made by one of the Loire's top-tier estates, Domaine Bernard Baudry. The only problem is its' scarcity.
          February 12, 2022

          Salena’s Flavor of the Week – Domaine Migot, Methode Traditionnelle Rosé NV

          Do not let Camille Migot's age fool you. While he is no doubt a young winemaker, he is serious and passionate about his work and legacy. The 13th generation in a long line of fervent winemakers, his estate is small but mighty; totaling a mere five hectares and located in the heart of Lorraine. Certified organic and eschewing modern technology, Camille continues his family's tradition. He is a force to be reckoned with, and his wines are all the proof one needs. Elegant, invigorating, astounding and full of life.
          February 5, 2022

          Salena’s Flavor Of The Week – Éric Texier ‘Chat Fou’ 2020

          Éric Texier is a master of the Rhône, whether it be single variety examples from the steep Northern slopes or multi-grape blends from the southern hills. His wines are always thrilling, spellbinding and thought provoking; wines that make you stop and pay attention to what's in your glass. Today's Côtes du Rhône proves to be just that. An idiosyncratic blend of both red AND white grapes, aptly named the 'Crazy Cat,' its clarity and precision bucks the trend of this vast region's innocuous, soul-less reds.
          February 2, 2022

          Exclusive: 2019 Jean-Claude Marsanne ‘Mauve’ Syrah

          Today's wine is made using traditional winemaking techniques handed down through generations. The result is transcendent; a masterful example of classic Northern Rhône Syrah. Its' deep, complex aromas of dark fruit, cured meat and granitic spice are why wines from this magical and minuscule domaine are so highly sought after. They haven't been imported to the US for decades and I'm thrilled to have acquired some for Monarch upon their triumphant return.
          January 29, 2022

          Salena’s Flavor Of The Week – Broc Cellars ‘Eagle Point Ranch’ Counoise 2018

          Wine is an art of balance, and few wines from California exemplify this as perfectly as today's offer. It all started back in Omaha, Nebraska when a young Chris Brockway fell in love with the peppery, prickling Zins and Rhône varietals grown in California, so he set out to make some himself. Today, he's is one of the most integral players in California's scene. Having hatched his project in a small urban winery in Berkley back in 2004 where he decided the over-extracted, high alcohol, 'bigger is better' wines that saturated the industry were the exact opposite of the wines he wanted to make and enjoy himself.
          January 26, 2022

          Exclusive: 2017 Dom. Des Cotes Rousses ‘La Mort’

          I remember exactly where I was, who I was with, even what time it was when I first tasted today's wine. It struck me profoundly, and I've been chasing it ever since. Sourced from an ultra-steep plot originally planted by monks, high in the French Alpine region of the Savoie. A vineyard so precariously steep it had been neglected for years, deemed too hard to work and aptly named 'Coteau de La Mort' or 'Hillside of Death.' The result is a wine that evokes its' terrain perfectly and beautifully, with dark mountain berries and an Alpine woodsiness that can only be tasted to be believed.
          January 22, 2022

          Salena’s Flavor Of The Week – Fabio Ferracane ‘Guancia Nera’ 2020

          I have had my fair share of Sicilian native Nero d'Avola since starting down this wine path, but this one is DIFFERENT. It's bold and brash with enticing, spicy aromatics. It has the typical layers of dark fruit and underbrush but this adaptation of Nero has a mid-palate acidity that makes your mouth water for more. A streak of freshness runs throughout this wine and really sets it apart from the ever present "baked and cooked" flavors found in other Neros at this price.
          January 19, 2022

          Exclusive: 2018 Division ‘Temperance Hill’ Pinot Noir

          If you accuse me of being a European wine snob, I would have no rebuttal. My education and career are rooted in the old-world. One spin around Monarch puts this on full display, as our new-world selections are relegated to only a few shelves in the back of the shop. Whether right or wrong, each time I taste domestic wine I immediately compare it to its' European counterpart. Can I find a European wine that delivers this same experience? If the answer is yes, I usually pass on the wine. Perhaps I'm too much of a domestic wine skeptic, but the wine has to REALLY SHINE and stand on its own. Today's wine does just that.
          January 15, 2022

          Salena’s Flavor Of The Week – Das Trocken 2020

          Brothers Peter and Michael Ebert work hand in hand to produce terroir driven wines from their 23 hectares on the steep slopes of the Nahe. Driven by their shared passion for wine and their homeland, they have a simple philosophy: make superior wines that reflect the interaction of the land, soil and climate seamlessly. In the end, this culminates into simply made wines that are anything but.