Let’s contrast the Old World and the New this week, with pinot noirs from Burgundy and California’s Central Coast, plus rosés from New York and Spain. And just for good measure, an Australian Riesling.
*** = Exceptional, ** = Excellent, * = Very Good
Baileyana Vineyards Firepeak Pinot Noir 2014
*** Great Value
Edna Valley, California, $24
One of Central California’s best pinot noirs, year in, year out, doesn’t disappoint in 2014. It’s rich and silky, with black cherry and blackberry flavors and a long finish. Alcohol by volume: 14.2 percent.
Distributed by Country Vintner: Available in the District at Cairo Wine & Liquor; on the list at 1789, P.J. Clarke’s. Available in Maryland at Rodman’s (White Flint), Waugh Chapel Wine & Spirits in Gambrills; on the list at Isabella’s and Reina in Frederick, Redwood in Bethesda. Available in Virginia at Arrowine & Cheese in Arlington, Balducci’s (Alexandria), Grape + Bean (Rosemont), Swirl & Sip in Fairfax, Unwined (Belleview); on the list at Gentle Harvest in Marshall, Parallel Wine Bistro in Broadlands, Salamander Resort in Middleburg.
Domaine Nicolas Rossignol Bourgogne Pinot Noir 2014
Burgundy, France, $35
From a revered Volnay producer, this entry-level Burgundy is anything but basic. It offers lively dark fruit flavors, grounded in earth, with an appealing herbal note emerging on the finish. This is a harmonious and lovely wine. ABV: 13 percent.
Distributed by Elite: Available in the District at Bell Wine & Spirits, Cork Market, Daily 14 Mart, Metro Wine & Spirits, Modern Liquors, Rodman’s, Schneider’s of Capitol Hill, Whole Foods Market (P St., Georgetown), Wide World of Wines; on the list at B Too, Brasserie Beck, Cork Wine Bar. Available in Maryland at Beards Hill Liquors in Aberdeen, Grand Cru, Mt. Washington Wine Co., Wells Discount Liquors and Wine Source in Baltimore; on the list at Parts & Labor in Baltimore, Petite Cellars in Ellicott City, Tino’s Italian Bistro in Columbia. Available in Virginia at Arrowine & Cheese and Grand Cru in Arlington, Balducci’s (Alexandria), Foods of All Nations in Charlottesville, Slater’s Market in Alexandria, Union Market in Richmond, Whole Foods Market (Arlington, Ashburn, Fairlakes, Vienna); on the list at Delia’s Mediterranean Grill in Alexandria, Evo Bistro in McLean, Pomme in Gordonsville, Ten Penh in Tyson’s Corner.
Pikes “Traditionale” Riesling 2015
Clare Valley, Australia, $22
Lovely fruit-basket flavors of tart apple, pear and quince, with a springtime herbal note. The lively acidity and great finish make this a fine example of New World Riesling. ABV: 12 percent.
Distributed by Country Vintner: Available in the District at Calvert Woodley, MacArthur Beverages; on the list at Bangkok Joe’s, Doi Moi. Available in Maryland at Balducci’s in Bethesda, College Square Liquors in Westminster, Cranbrook Liquors in Cockeysville. Available in Virginia at Oakton Wine Shop, Unwined (Belleview).
Bridge Lane Rosé 2016
**-1/2 Great Value
New York State, $17
Bridge Lane is the second label of Long Island’s Lieb Cellars, known for stellar sparkling wines. This scintillating rosé bursts with zingy strawberry and cantaloupe flavors, with a tang of minty mango on the finish. ABV: 11.9 percent.
Distributed by Hop & Wine: Available in the District at Glen’s Garden Market (both locations), Yes! Organic Market (Georgia Ave.). Available in Virginia at Altura Wine & Gourmet and Planet Wine & Gourmet in Alexandria, Cheesetique (Shirlington), Mom’s Apple Pie in Occoquan, Wine Styles (Montclair).
Usoa de Bagordi Rosado 2016
** Great Value
Rioja, Spain, $10
This organic rosé, made from 100 percent garnacha (grenache) grapes, is juicy with strawberry and raspberry flavors and an appealing bitterness that makes the finish refreshing. ABV: 13.5 percent.
Distributed by Dionysus: Available in the District at A. Litteri, Cleveland Park Wine and Spirits, Mom’s Organic Market, Rodman’s; on the list at Estadio. Available in Maryland at Balducci’s (Bethesda), Bradley Food and Beverage in Bethesda, Finewine.com in Gaithersburg, Mom’S Organic Market (Rockville), Wine Source in Baltimore. Available in Virginia at Balducci’s (Alexandria, McLean), Mom’s Organic Market (Alexandria, Arlington, Herndon, Merrifield, Woodbridge), Unwined (Alexandria, Belleview).
Originally posted on washingtonpost.com on March 25, 2017.