fine Wine Source Wine Club
Chateau Latour de Beraud: Château La Tour de Béraud is located in the southern part of the Rhône Valley in AOP Costières-de-Nîmes. The estate lies in the historical geographically important area between Nîmes, Arles, and Avignon. La Tour de Béraud is an ancient fire tower. Its roof was open so that everyone could easily see when a fire was set into it. It was built by in the eleventh-century on the top of the Costière (Coast). Dominating the large plain of Beaucaire, one could see 50 miles away down to Camargue…where there were other fire towers. Part of a large network of watchtowers from the Mediterranean to the Rhône River, a fire from a tower sounded the alarm when invaders were coming. The vineyards make up @30acres & are planted on terraced slopes, composed of clay and pebble soils which were deposited in the area as glaciers moved through the continent during the quaternary period, a geological time period that encompasses the most recent 2.6 million years (including the present day). This specific terroir gives freshness and balance to the wines while the sunny climate of the Rhone ripens the grapes to perfection. Francois Collard is one of the most gifted viticulteurs in the area, and along with his wife Anne, run the Chateau and manages the property that was purchased by the family in the 1960’s. Fran
About: Since the vineyards are situated only a few miles from the Rhone River. The result is an exceptional terroir composed of flat, rounded stones (“galets”) on clay and limestone, enabling the vines to draw nutrients and moisture for the depths of the soil. The galets protect the soil from evaporation and also add a touch of minerality and freshness to the wines. The vineyards were originally made up of predominantly red varietals, dominated by old vine Carignan; however, over the years Francois has expanded the varietal makeup. The vinification was done using the traditional method; maceration of 2-3 weeks in tank at 25-26 degrees, and maturation for about a year in concrete tanks to preserve its natural freshness.
Varietals: 45% Grenache Noir (Adds Fruit & Roundness), 30% Syrah (Adds Color/Finesse/Full Flavor), 15% Mourvedre (Adds Complexity&Fruit),5% Marselan (Adds Tannins/Color/Tangy Fruit)
Tasting Notes: Aromas of red fruit, mild spice are supported by harmoniously integrating tannin. Ready to drink now, but can be kept for 2 years…decanting is recommended.
Jim Lutfy’s Thoughts: Rustic flavors of tobacco, mushroom, and savory white pepper and sea salt notes. Best served with savory soups and roasts.
fine Wine Source Wine Club
Desert Wind Winery: From the very first harvest in 1994, the Fries (Frees) Family marveled at the intensely concentrated fruit produced by their Desert Wind Vineyard-fruit perfect for crafting wines with immense structure and aging potential. In 2001, the family introduced Desert Wind wines in order to showcase this exceptional vineyard through its own wine brand. In 2004, the family built a crush pad and wine production facility in Prosser, Washington, allowing them to process the fruit and age wines in close proximity to their vineyard sites. Three years later, they opened Desert Wind Winery, an immense Santa Fe-inspired destination housing a tasting room, restaurant and luxury overnight accommodations. .
About: Three vineyard sites owned by the Fries family: Desert Wind Vineyard, Sacagawea Vineyard, and Estate Vineyard, provide the fruit for Desert Wind wines. The Estate Vineyard surrounds the Desert Wind facility in the Yakima Valley. The other vineyards lie at the foot of the Saddle Mountains in the Wahluke Slope AVA, a sub-appellation of Eastern Washington’s Columbia Valley that is known for its fierce summer conditions. The site is considered Zone 3, the hottest in the region. The climate is extreme, and it is not uncommon for summer temperatures to reach 110°F. Winter days may be as cold as 14°F with an annual rainfall of only 7-8 inches. The vines require irrigation during the hot summer months and the soil is rocky and shallow with excellent drainage. The 480-acre vineyard is a southern facing block with a two percent slope and shallow, rocky soil. The vines are irrigated with an underground drip system; double catch wires are used to increase air circulation during the growing season. Leaf pulling and cluster thinning are important steps in aiding the ripening of the grapes. The 2014 growing season was a great one on the Wahluke Slope – warm throughout, with a sunny September. This allowed The Cabernet Sauvignon grapes to achieve ideal ripeness, while still maintaining great naturally acidity. After fermentation, the wine was aged for sixteen months, allowing time for the tannins to mature and soften the finish.
Varietals: 100% Cabernet Sauvignon
Tasting Notes: The 2014 Desert Wind Cabernet Sauvignon is extremely rich, with flavors of blackberry and Bing cherry, with hints of cinnamon and cocoa. Enjoy now or cellar for three to five years.
Jim Lutfy’s Thoughts: Rich, opulent, and loaded with flavors and complexity. Patience will be rewarded with cellaring for a few years. Best served with pork or roast beef.