Still in deep deadline mode, but wanted to share a bit of ‘research’ I’ve been doing for a piece I’m working on for basil + salt magazine, slated for publication in early 2018…I’ve included the producer names with the images in case you want to try these on your own at home before you read my article…so many bubbles, so little time…May your holidays be cozy, bright – and full of bubbles!
Always a treat to hear from you – please feel free to leave your comments below, or on Twitter/Instagram @binnotes.
Copyrighted 2017 L.M. Archer | binNotes. All Rights Reserved.
This tasting marks the first in my focus on Affordable Burgundy + Beyond. Here, I taste through a bit of ‘beyond’ – Pinot Noir and Chardonnay-based bubbles from South Africa.
If Champagne has a soul sister, it may be Méthode Cap Classique. Specific to South Africa, Cap Classique employs the same “traditional method” used to make Champagne, whereby the second fermentation occurs in bottle.
A key figure behind establishing South Africa’s Méthode Cap Classique sparkling wine is Pieter “Bubbles” Ferreira, cellarmaster at Graham Beck Wines in Robertson. Champagne-trained, South African inspired, Ferreira favors an elegant, crisp ‘house style’ that compliments the region’s diverse cuisine.
These tastings notes compliment a recent Skype interview I conducted with Pieter Ferreira hosted by Wines of South Africa. Please look for the forthcoming interview here later this summer.
Authors Note: I was delightfully surprised to meet Pieter at IPNC this past weekend, and can vouch that he is every bit as effervescent as his wines.
Wine: Graham Beck Brut Méthode Cap Classique Sparkling Wine (51% Chardonnay, 49% Pinot Noir)
Want to understand more about it, but not sure where to start?
Or maybe just looking for a stocking stuffer for your favorite wine lover?
Here’s one solution – the book Terroir Champagne by fellow wine writer and international author Caroline Henry.
Terroir Champagne provides the key to unlocking a complex region with uncomplicated ease, a visually appealing book replete with lush photos and concise text.
A certified sommelier, journalist and author, Caroline Henry possesses a keen understanding of Champagne’s unique history, varied soil types and time-intensive vinification practices. A resident of Hautvillers since 2011, the author also enjoys personal relationships with most of the region’s sustainable, organic and biodynamic grower-producers.
Henry showcases over eighty of these mostly family-owned enterprises in her three-part book, a book which begins with a pair of thoughtful forwards by multi-award winning Champagne writer & gastronomic reporter Michael Edwards and International Wine & Spirit Communicator of the Year 2015, International Champagne Writer of the Year 2011, and The Champagne Guide” author Tyson Stelzer.
Part I outlines the modern history of Champagne’s sustainable, organic and biodynamic movements, an explanation of biodynamic preparations, and a handy breakdown of regional soil types.
Part II provides deeply personal portraits of growers by region – Aube, Cote des Blancs, Montagne de Reims, and Vallee de la Marne – along with accompanying menus for each producer’s unique, hand-crafted cuvées.
Part III concludes with a short practical guide to where one can buy and enjoy terroir champagne, a list of organic and biodynamic growers, and a helpful glossary.
A must-have for any wine lover, Champagne enthusiast, or student of the vine.
Jill Barth, author of award-winning blog L’Occassion. | Image: Courtesy Jill Barth.
During this holiday season, I wanted to take time extend a heartfelt thanks to my Guest Wine Writers Series 2016 participants for the joy you’ve brought to readers here.
For those of you unfamiliar with the series, I invited some of my fellow wine writers to join me here on the first Friday of every monthin 2016 to shine a light on any rare, obscure, or under-appreciated wine region for which they felt a special passion.
Each writer brought their own inimitable voice, style and skill to the page, capturing readers’ imaginations worldwide.
In light of its success, I’ve agreed to reprise the Guest Wine Writer Series in 2017, with a few modifications. Look for the 2017 series to run bi-monthly on the last Friday of the month, rather than the first Friday monthly.
In the meantime, thanks for your ongoing appreciation of inspired stories about artisan wine and taste makers.
Copyrighted 2016 binNotes | red thread™. All Rights Reserved.
Inspired stories about artisan wine and taste makers.
by L.M. Archer FWS, Bourgogne ML
No, I haven’t forgotten about you – just busy traveling in Oregon, San Francisco, and N. California…oh, and a future visit to Texas Hill Country in December.
Please join me for the balance of 2016 as I amp up my redThread™ interviews with artisan wine and taste makers – and crank up my Hedonistic Tasting notes, too!
Pssst…I’ll also be winding down my Guest Writer Series for 2016…so settle in and get cozy as I toss the mike the first Friday of each month through the end of the year to a bevy of my favorite vibrant voices in the wine writing world as they offer their unique perspectives on a few of their favorite, obscure wine regions.
Oh, and if that isn’t enough, you get to glimpse my pain while pursuing a Champagne Master Level designation through the Wine Scholar Guild…it’s a natural progression, really, for this Burgundy geek – learning another expression of Pinot and Chardonnay, this time with texture!
As usual, I will continue to share links to my professional features in various publications.
And if you haven’t already, you can follow along with me on social media, and sign up for my monthly newsletter at email@example.com
Social feeds vary to fit the needs/interests of my followers – some helpful hints:
Instagram: My go-to for sharing tasting notes and live tasting/event feeds.
Twitter: Tied to Instagram; also where I share current/breaking wine world news and industry shout-outs.
Facebook: Where I share my featured articles and interviews with various affinity groups, and shout-outs to wine industry and professional writer colleagues.
LinkedIn: Where I share my professional writing and video correspondence.