PhotoEvan Dawson: Jaquesson 1996 Champagne

Thank you Alice Feiring.

See, my wife grew up in a family that
drinks Champagne at every holiday. Christmas. Thanksgiving. Easter.
Arbor Day. Bastille Day.

So, she enjoys sparkling wines more than I do,
but she wanted to break into a different realm. That's where the wine
world's most ardent naturalist came in.

After reading Alice's book I tried to
track down any of the small production, more natural Champagnes
mentioned in her book. This was the only one I could find, and even
then I had to have it shipped from NYC. It was worth it.

The bread
dough, salted nuts and lemon peel in the nose had me at hello. The
problem now is that I don't want to even look at a bottle of Veuve


Lamoreaux LandingJason Feulner: Lamoreaux Landing 2006 Dry Riesling

Many 2006 Finger Lakes dry rieslings are a joy for those who like
intense acidity and minerality.

This Lamoreaux Landing 2006 Dry Riesling was a
little too tight on the mid-palate for me, but the finish was long and

The wine sparkled and danced down the throat with all the
steely elements of a cool-climate riesling vintage, the acid providing
a nice crispness and the minerality evolving with every sip.

Just a
touch more fruit flavor and this would have shown perfectly–perhaps
more will be present with age. 


HumanitasLenn Thompson: Humanitas Wines 2005 Caldwell Vineyard Napa Cabernet Sauvignon

Yes, I even drink California wines on occasion and I'm always interested in drinking anything from Humanitas Wines, a small, one-man garagiste operation run by Judd Wallenbrock. Why am I willing to submit my palate to California wines in the case of Humanitas?

Judd makes small batches of wines
(literally in his garage) and donates all of the profits to
charity. All. Of. The. Profits. Hard not to like that, isn't it?

Best of all, I actually liked this wine.

Dense, concentrated, lush dark fruit and spice flavors dominated with plenty of oak, hints of vanilla, but also a restraint that not every Napa cab shows. Not something I'd want to drink all the time, but a nice reminder of how different Napa wines are from what I drink every day.