Stay Connected
What We're Drinking

 

So why is the 2012 Ladera Cabernet—made from almost entirely from Howell Mountain fruit, from an incredible vintage—sitting pretty at $34.99? I honestly can't tell you. Maybe it's because no one knows how good the Ladera holdings in Howell Mountain are. Or maybe it's the pride that winemaker Jade Barrett takes in making a serious wine for a reasonable price. Or maybe it's because Ladera is an overlooked gem in a sea of Napa alternatives. For whatever the reason, I'm not going to complain. We tasted the 2012 vintage at our staff training yesterday and I was just floored by the quality of this wine. Dark, fleshy fruit cloaked in fine tannins, bits of earth, and in total balance, with enough gusto to go the long haul in your cellar. It's a whole lotta wine for $34.99, and it's made primarily from Howell Mountain grapes, harvested during a great vintage. 

Recent Videos

Tasting with Oliver Krug

Upcoming Events

We host regular weekly and Saturday wine tastings in each K&L location.

For the complete calendar, including lineups and additional details related to our events, visit our K&L Local Events on KLWines.com or follow us on Facebook.  

 

Visit our events page on Facebook or the K&L Spirits Journal for more information.

>>Upcoming Special Events, Dinners, and Tastings

See all K&L Local Events

Archives
« One great bottle: 2004 Pierre Paillard | Main | It's Back! 2012 Waterkloof Circumstance "Cape Coral" Mourvèdre Rosé $16.99! »
Thursday
Oct102013

Bonville- Meals & Magnums with The Doug

This Champagne Friday guest piece was written by K&L super star Doug Burress, lovingly known as the "The Doug" here in Redwood City. He is a full time 5th grade teacher and still finds time to come and help us out in the holidays and will be here making sure the Redwood City tent event comes off without a hitch. His passion for, and knowledge of Champagne is contagious. I feel very lucky to have drained a magnum or two over the years with The Doug, and honored when he volunteered to write this piece on Champagne Franck Bonville.

 Olivier Bonville on a cold April day in his vineyards

I am lucky enough to be able to talk with Gary about Champagne quite often. Inevitably the conversation focuses on two questions that come up a lot in the Redwood City store: Can Champagne be served throughout an entire meal? And, What difference does it make drinking Champagne from a magnum (1500ml)?

The Doug, pouring ChampagneBoth questions can be answered using my favorite grower-producer Champagne, the Franck Bonville “Brut Selection” Blanc de Blancs. Bonville also makes a beautiful rosé, an extra brut, the “Prestige” Blanc de Blancs, fabulous vintage Champagne, and the amazing “Belle Voyes” Blanc de Blancs. These bottles disappear quickly when they get to the shop, but they are all worthy of keeping tabs on the K and L website in order to purchase a few bottles when they do come in.

I focus on the “Brut Selection” ($32.99) because it is amazing Champagne that is affordable enough to purchase by the case and it pairs easily with a variety of dishes. In addition, Gary always brings in several magnums of the “Brut Selection.” The “Brut Selection” was running low at our house the other day so I quickly went to K and L to rectify the situation. When I arrived Gary wanted to show me some of the new selections in the shop (the Prévoteau-Perrier Champagnes are another must try), but I headed directly to the warehouse to grab a case of the “Brut Selection.” I had to make sure that I was able to bring home some Bonville for dinner that night.

Dealing with the first question above, I can truly say that, in my household, we drink the “Brut Selection” a couple of times a week, throughout our entire dinner. Don’t get me wrong, we like our red wine, but when Champagne is opened it is very difficult to set it aside for the red stuff. We have paired this all Grand Cru Avize chardonnay with many dishes including stuffed mushrooms, grilled halibut, herb crusted chicken, Caesar salad, a variety of pasta sauces, pizza, and many different vegetable dishes. The “Brut Selection” is packed with enough fresh citrus and spice to pair well with so many dishes, and it proves over and over that Champagne can be sipped throughout an entire meal.

Olivier Bonville with whole tank of Avize Chardonnay“Champagne does taste better out of magnum.” You will hear these words spoken by many of my coworkers and it simply answers the second question from above. The simple science behind why this is true is that there is more Champagne coming in contact with more of the yeast in these larger bottles. More winespending time in contact with the lees leads to magnums of Champagne that can age longer, and are more expressive, fresh, and toasty. I make sure to have at least a couple of magnums of Bonville on hand. Out of magnum the Bonville “Brut Selection” ($69.99) presents loads of toasty spice notes along with the fresh citrus and elegant floral aromas. Magnums of Bonville always put a smile on my face!

I encourage you to try pairing Champagne with an entire meal as well as comparing a magnum of Champagne along side its smaller, standard sized bottling. I can’t recommend a better bottle with which to conduct both of these experiments than the Franck Bonville “Brut Selection” Blanc de Blancs. - Doug Burress

PrintView Printer Friendly Version

EmailEmail Article to Friend

Reader Comments

There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Post:
 
All HTML will be escaped. Hyperlinks will be created for URLs automatically.