Release 24 - September 2018

Foot of the Bed Cellars 2017 Columbia Valley Gruner Veltliner

Drink Your Greens

While it may sound German, Gruner Veltliner is actually Austria’s flagship grape variety, covering 31 percent of the country’s vineyards. Although their next-door neighbor may be known for sweet wines, Gruner Veltliner is almost always made in a completely dry style. The grape is unique, exhibiting traits unlike other white varieties. Although it always displays tones of green apple and fresh lemon, it is the herbal character of the wine that makes it so distinct. Aromas of parsley, green bean, and lentil are all classic markers for the grape. It is these flavors that make Gruner Veltliner such an excellent pairing with many salads.

Summer At The Lake

Lake Chelan lies due east from Seattle, but it is separated by the Wenatchee Mountains, which protect it from the notorious Pacific Northwest storms. Both white and red grapes grow well in this dry, sunny climate. The sloping vineyards of Vin du Lac Winery necessitate hand harvesting, a costly and time-consuming process, but one that ensures maximum ripeness.

Although Gruner Veltliner is grown only in small quantities within the state, this example shows all of the fresh, zesty, slightly herbal character that one would expect from this underrated grape variety.

Foot of the Bed Cellars 2015 Lodi Carignan

More Synonyms Than A Thesaurus

There was a time when Carignan was the most planted grape in France, but it is originally from Spain, where it is known as Mazuelo. In Spanish Catalonia, however, it goes by the name Samso and it has enjoyed a recent resurgence in the Priorat region just outside of Barcelona.

There are some plantings in Italy, where they call it Carignano. Some folks in the U.S. label it as Carignane. Wherever it is grown, and no matter what you call it, limiting the yields in the vineyard is the key to producing characterful wine. We think this wine could just be called Delicious.

From Bust To Bush Vines

The Jessie’s Grove vineyard was first planted in 1888 by a German immigrant who had come to California looking for gold but instead found success as a farmer. Many of these old vines exist to this day, including the nearly 120-year-old vines that produced this wine. In earlier times, each vine was planted and left to grow on its own with the support of only a stake, if that. There were no neat rows with leaves and grape clusters supported by wire systems as we often see today. These old plantings are sometimes called bush vines in various parts of the world. These gnarled vines produce a full-bodied style of Carignan, with juicy raspberry notes and a subtle smokiness. It is the perfect accompaniment to grilled burgers here at the end of summer.

Martin Sheehan-Stross