December 17, 2017

November 2017 Wines of the Month

We’re featuring two French wines in November: Pont De Gassac Blanc and a red, Boutinot Rhône – Les Coteaux Côtes du Rhône Villages.

About the wines:

Pont De Gassac Blanc

Mas de Daumas Gassac

From the Herault’s most famous Estate Mas de Dumas Gassac is often referred to as ‘the Lafite or First Growth of the Languedoc’. Pont de Gassac Blanc is the Domaine’s reserve wine that comes exclusively from their vineyards high up in the Gassac valley. It is a beautifully fresh and vibrant blend of Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc & Clairette – a cross between the best of white from the Rhone & Bordeaux. At 1/3 of the price of their first wine, it is a real treat and a bargain at this price.

Tasting notes:
A beautifully full and fresh bouquet of citrus fruit gives way to a richly textured and full bodied wine with great minerality from these vineyards that have never seen chemicals. Very well made and delicious by itself and even better with fish, spices and white meats. The wine is a blend of Chardonnay, Clairette, Sauvignon Blanc from the  Appellation Pays d’Herault. It has an alcohol content of 12.5 percent.
 
The remarkable story of Mas de Daumas Gassac, begins in 1971 when Parisian glove-maker Aimé Guibert bought an isolated farmhouse high up in the valley of a stream called the Gassac..

The Guiberts had no previous knowledge of wine and there were no vines on the Estate. A friend from the University of Bordeaux specializing in vineyard geology realised that Daumas Gassac sat upon the best possible combination of soil for winemaking, with superb drainage and its own unique microclimate. The proximity to the sea keeps the vineyards air-conditioned and the cellars, chilled by the waters of the stream, remain wonderfully cool even in the height of summer.

The Guiberts hired the best wine brains available, including Professor Emile Peynaud – a great oenologist associated with Bordeaux. Peynaud advised them exactly which vines to plant and how. Though cabernet sauvignon was the grape variety planted for the first vintages, the idea was not to mimic Bordeaux, even though one commentator called the 1982 vintage the ‘Lafite of the Languedoc’ which caused initially slow sales to rocket. The wines of Mas de Daumas Gassac have a degree of natural austerity that is more akin to the great wines of Bordeaux or the Loire than the Languedoc.

Boutinot Rhône – Les Coteaux Côtes du Rhône Villages

Boutinot Rhône – Les Coteaux Côtes du Rhône Villages

Common practice in the Côtes du Rhône is to bottle the best cuvées as a single named village wine and the rest as basic Rhône Villages. Boutinot’s philosophy, on the other hand, is to start with the intention of making the very best Côtes du Rhône Villages possible by sourcing wine from the vineyards of named villages and enriching them with a small proportion of barrel-aged wine fromSéguret & Cairanne. Boutinot Les Coteaux is therefore a selection of the best from some of the17 named Côtes du Rhône Villages. The 2009 vintage is mostly Grenache Noir with some Syrah. Eric Monnin sources wine from a number of growers with exceptional terroir allowing him the flexibility to select only the very best fruit each vintage and reject parcels which do not meet our high standards. We source Grenache Noir and Syrah grapes from vineyards encompassed within named villages of the southern Rhône valley.

 

Tasting notes
Instantly impressive this wine reveals its class right from the start. An exuberantly fruity nose with high notes of complexity and depth is followed by intense lashings of flavour on the palate. The finish is smooth and satisfying with depth and persistence – simply stunning!Food Recommendations: A delicious accompaniment to grilled meats and heart-warming casseroles.

WFIR Has the Story on Our 80th!

Celebrating 80 Years

Thank you WFIR for telling our story. And thank you to our customers for helping to keep writing it. 

Listen to it here. And come see us today until 8 pm and tomorrow from 9 am to 8 pm.

October 2017 Wine of the Month Club

We’re featuring a Chardonnay from France and a red blend from Spain.

Gueugnon Remond Macon Charnay
100% Chardonnay. Veronique and Jean-Christophe Remond have at heart to make you discover their wines, reflecting a traditional wine making and representative of the soils of South Mâcon combining respect and typical varietals. Selection of old vines of Chardonnay sixty years on clay and limestone soils, harvested early in the morning “Dawn” on which we make a maceration of several hours: part of the alcoholic fermentation takes plaWOTM1017-1ce in regulated tank. Then the wine is placed in oak for a short period, which completes the breakdown of sugars, followed by malolactic fermentation. After ten months of aging, the wine is bottled. Because of skin maceration and barrel aging this wine has a varied range of flavors, and despite his youth, this round wine with nice tannins well integrated with lots of pleasure.

 

WOTM1017-2J. Fernando Red Blend
60% Tempranillo, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Garnacha, estate produced and bottled. Castilla, Spain. Rich, ripe and deep ruby red with a core of smoky cherry and layers of black raspberry, cassis and chocolate flavors, this wine is modern in style with freshness and balance. 18 months in oak.

Sean Minor Four Bears Chardonnay at Tinnell’s

When we brought it in we never imagined!

Four Bears Chardonnay

When we first tasted it we obviously loved the Four Bears Chardonnay from Sean Minor Wines but never imagined it would become our best-selling wine so quickly!  In the last three months alone we have sold more bottles of this delightful well-balanced Chardonnay than we sold of almost any wine in all of 2011 and there is good reason.  To paraphrase the Sean Minor tasting notes: The 2010 “Four Bears” Chardonnay (named after Sean’s four children) is made entirely from Chardonnay grapes grown in the Central Coast appellation of California and is a golden straw color.  It displays aromas of pears, apples and orange blossoms with subtle notes of toast and butter.  On the entry, green apple acidity integrates well with a medium body mid palate mouth feel.  The apricot, green apple and marmalade toast flavors evolve into a hint of minerality that adds complexity to the finish.

Many of our customers tell us “I don’t like Chardonnay” and I believe them.  The judicious use of oak in Chardonnay production is a beautiful thing, much like the use of hot peppers when cooking.  What happens when you use too many peppers?  The result ends up being unpalatable (well… for most of us anyway)!  For years, many winemakers in California were guilty of producing Chardonnays that were ridicul0usly oaky.  There was so much wood in these things that drinking one was more akin to sucking on a popsicle stick than to drinking a glass of fine wine.  While the public (due to demand) was as responsible for this trend as the winemakers were, I believe in the long run it did more to hurt the reputation of Chard than it did to popularize it.  I remember the first time I brought home a lovely unoaked Chablis to my wife Kendall and she said she “didn’t like Chards”.  When she tasted it it was a revelation to her: “It tastes like fruit!”

The Four Bears Chardonnay, while oaked, is perfectly balanced.  It does indeed taste like it is made from fruit instead of the wooden pallets the fruit was shipped on!  If you “don’t like Chardonnay” do yourself a favor: try a bottle of this stuff – I think it will change your tune!  Here are the notes from Winemakers Will Bucklin and Sean Minor himself:  “Our Chardonnay fruit was 100% whole-cluster pressed to minimize astringency from the skins and immediately racked to stainless steel. Once settled, a portion was fermented in small French oak barrels while the remaining lot was left in stainless steel tanks to ferment. The slow and cool fermentation allowed the wine to develop a balance of ripe tropical fruit flavors and crisp apple and mineral nuances. Once primary fermentation was completed, a portion of the wine went through malo-lactic fermentation which softens the wine and provides a perfect balance.”  The ABV (alcohol by volume) racks in at 13.5% and the pH at 3.53.

In a nutshell?  This stuff is delicious.  And as if that weren’t enough, you can pick it up at Tinnell’s Finer Foods for only $11.99 (or buy a case and get it for $10.79)!  I often tell my customers that if this wine sold for $15.00 a bottle it would still be a bargain and I mean it…  Swing by Tinnell’s, pick some up for yourself and see!

Tinnell’s Artisanal Cheese Selection

Several months ago we at Tinnell’s realized that with the passing of “Say Cheese” in downtown Mini Torta de OvejaRoanoke a few years back, the Valley no longer featured a cheese shop… we decided to rectify the situation!  Since our epiphany, we have been bringing in gorgeous, handmade artisan cheeses, charcuterie and “accessories” and our selection truly has to be seen to be appreciated.

Parmigiano Reggiano

Parmigiano Reggiano at Tinnell’s

When it comes to cheese we are, of course, carrying the classics: Parmigiano Reggiano; Aged ManchegoCurado“; fresh Mozzarella; Stilton (from Tuxford & Tebbutt… AMAZING); Boucheron; Brillat Savarin.  We are carrying more unique “specialty” cheeses: Cypress Grove “Purple Haze“; Beehive “Big John” Cajun Cheddar; Rogue Smokey Blue; Morel & Leek Jack (you have got to taste this stuff!); Ashe Juusto; Drunken Goat.  We are also carrying an impressive selection of local and regional cheeses: Goat Feta from Curtin’s Dairy (Rocky Mount); BloominLunitas (Hillsborough, NC); “Simply Cheddar Ball” from Waynesboro (not as simple as it sounds!); the entire line from Meadow Creek Dairy in Galax (Mountaineer, Appalachian and Grayson).  We also are stocking an impressive selection of handmade charcuterie ranging from Olli Salami produced in Richmond  to the inimitable Prosciutto di Parma (sliced to order) to the unbelievably tasty “San Guiseppe” line of salamis and sopressata produced in Elon, North Carolina by expatriate New Yorker Giacomo Santomauro!

Prosciutto di Parma

Prosciutto di Parma

To accompany your delightful cheese of choice we have loads of options.  We have the best Spanish Marcona almonds you will ever try (both raw and roasted), chutneys, ginger preserves, offerings from “Les Folies Fromages” (French small-batch compotes each designed to pair with a specific cheese type) as well as a wide array of crackers.  We carry olives: olive “grab bags”, olive tapenade, Spanish Manzanilla olives stuffed with pimentos, garlic, Marconas or (my personal favorite) anchovies.  Another “can’t-live-without” cheese partner is a fabulous olive oil, and Tinnell’s features the very best Greek extra-virgin olive oil from Ariston as well as an amazingly sweet, rich balsamic vinegar “di Modena“, both of which we carry in bulk so you can refill your bottles during your next shopping visit!  Of course no cheese platter is complete without bread and we receive daily shipments from Bread Craft and On the Rise, both locally owned and Roanoke-produced.  Also to be found is a wide assortment fruit from our wonderful produce section.  Last but not least, what is cheese without wine?  If you have not visited Tinnell’s Finer Foods in a while you may be surprised to find we have one of the largest wine departments in the Roanoke Valley with a wide-ranging selection of fine wines to fit any budget!

Cheese & Wine

Cheese & Wine

Since 1937 Tinnell’s Finer Foods has prided itself on providing the best customer service available anywhere.  So if you can’t find what you are looking for in stock, we are always happy to source anything you are looking for, whether it be cheese, wine or just general grocery items and get it in for you.  Please don’t hesitate to ask… it is truly our pleasure.

To get a more detailed listing of our cheese offerings please visit the Tinnell’s Cheese Menu.  In it you will find an extensive list of our cheese and charcuterie selections, wine pairing suggestions for each and every cheese and helpful hints on creating a cheese platter.  If you would prefer, Tinnell’s would be happy to make a cheese platter for you!  We can assemble a platter for virtually any budget with cheeses, crackers, fruit, etcetera… whatever you request.  Of course, we are getting in new cheese each and every week so the best way for you to see what we have is to stop by and see for yourself… we are more than happy to open up any cheese in the store and let you have a sample!  If you would like more information about our cheese and charcuterie department or to order up a cheese platter for your next event please feel free to contact our Meat & Deli Manager Daniel Scott at 540.345.7334.

Tinnell's Cheese Platter

Tinnell’s Cheese Platter