We’re Toasting: Resolve to Drink Better in 2016

Chateau St. Georges
Chateau St. Georges, St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France

Part of our new adventure with Cogill Consulting is for me to help restaurants create their new wine lists. My latest work has been with the amazing Chef Joanne Bondy on her restaurant Stocks & Bondy, selling culinary commodities, like her amazing bone broths, homemade soups and stocks, at the new Market building at The Dallas Farmers Market.

One of the key things we wanted to do with the wine list was include an incredible selection of wines, at incredible prices, available for enjoyment both at the Market, as well as for taking home. And, every selection has a very personal connection to me, as many are my favorites.

With the start of the new year, and hopes to save a few dollars in 2016 while still drinking well, here are a few selections, all under $20, that offer both value and incredible taste. Stocks & Bondy is open Wednesday – Monday 11am – 6pm.

Elena Walch vineyards rise above the town of Traminer, Italy
Elena Walch vineyards rise above the town of Traminer, Italy

Elena Walch Pinot Grigio, 2014, Alto Adige, Italy– I love this wine & producer. Female/family run by a former architect that met her winemaker husband refurbishing his family estate. She wanted to get into wine, but didn’t just go to work for him, she did it on her own, creating one of the most highly respected wineries in Alto Adige. Now run by her with the help of her two daughter. Pinot Grigio can be a too fruity at times, but the altitudes and climate of Alto Adige, at the base of the Italian Alps in the Dolomite Mountains, keeps this wine racy, fresh and vibrant with steely minerality, great acidity, citrus and orchard flavors. $18.00

Fall Creek Sauvignon Blanc, 2014, Hill Country, Texas – From one of our favorite Dallas Dames, Susan Auler, Fall Creek wines in the Texas Hill Country was started in 1975 with the goal to make Bordeaux style wine in Texas. About 2 years ago, after better understanding what will thrive in Texas soils, they brought on winemaker Sergio Cuadra, a winemaker from Chile with a global perspective (previously working with the likes of Paul Hobbs and others), was hired to craft benchmark wines at Fall Creek Vineyards from their Texas Terroir. This Sauvignon Blanc is lively and expressive on the palate with citrus and passion fruit aromas laced with floral tones, well-knitted with crisp acidity. $10.50


Martin Codax Albarino, 2014, Rias Baixas, Spain – Spain’s green majestic coast filled with old, pergola vines of Albarino and lots of seafood. Briny, mineral rich, steely white wines with texture and freshness. Citrus, white flowers, crushed stone and soft herbs. Beautiful, approachable and easy. $15


90 year old Barbera vines
90 year old Barbera vines

Ricossa Barbera d’Asti, 2011, Asti, Piemonte, Italy – Fresh, balanced and light, a delicious, fresh red wine with low tannin and great acidity, making it very food friendly, from the heart of Italy’s royal region. Filled with ripe and dried cherries, raspberries and blueberries with a touch of toasted vanilla, dark chocolate and spice. $17

Belasco “Llama” Malbec, 2014, Mendoza, Argentina – from very old vines, 105 years, from high elevation vines at the base of the Andes Mountains in Mendoza, Argentina. The signature grape of Argentina, producing a food friendly, hearty red with morello cherry, ripe blackberry and licorice notes melding with forest floor and tobacco characteristics. $12.75

Merlot vines in Bordeaux
Merlot vines in Bordeaux

Chateau St. Georges St. Emilion Grand Cru, 2011, Bordeaux-France (750ml and 375ml)- From the sub-region of St Georges in St. Emilion, Bordeaux on the Right Bank (Merlot side of Bordeaux) comes the historic and elegant Chateau St. Georges that’s history dates back to 1602, with the current family owning the gorgeous Chateau since 1891. Lush and lively, fresh yet refined, blending 80% Merlot with 10% Cabernet Sauvignon and 10% Cabernet Franc for the 2011 release. A beautifully balanced wine with well integrated tannins, making this affordable Bordeaux a food friendly wine to enjoy upon release. 375ml available for $16


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