April 2021 | 12 Bottle Club
Welcome to the April 12 Bottle Club from MYSA Natural Wine!
A note from our founder:
Spring is here! This season always feels to me like the most versatile time of the year for wine because it's crisp, but getting warm, everything is blooming, and the options are endless! I always enjoy curating the 12 club most because I'm able to go in so many directions and I think you'll see that well this month. With a few options for bubbles, some well timed rose, chillable reds, a special occasion wine and the first piquette of the year I think you'll be well prepped for the start of Spring!
- Holly, founder MYSA Natural Wine
- Cava - Azimut
- Grotta di Sole - Clos Marfisi
- Cinsault - Onda Brava
- Provincia di Pavia Rosso - Castello di Stefanago
- SKINS - Field Recordings
- Pinke Pinke Rosé - Weingut Schlossmuhlenhof
- Uvica Côtes du Rhône Rouge - Vignerons Ardechois
- Gnarly White - The Three Foxes
- Deu Pinote - Bojo du Luar
- Terra Ambera - Garalis
- Praja - Cardedu
- Take it Easy - Old Westminster
- Wine Evaluation Sheet
Catalonia - Spain
We LOVE Cava! This is basically the driest example of sparkling wine you can find, very dry. Produced from a family that farms everything organically right outside Barcelona. It's made the same way as Champagne, so you'll notice it has a few similar characteristics. Soft with consistent light bubbles from a minimum of 10 months of bottle aging on lees. Creaminess on the nose with notes of lemon meringue pie with a dollop whipped cream on top. On the palate, this Cava is nice and frothy. Yummy but not super complex. A great, traditional example of how a Cava should be. This is the sparkling wine that should be at all of your celebrations!
Pairings: Salads, Shellfish, Brunch
Serving Temperature: 45°- 50°
Owned by the Suriol family, Cellers de Can Suriol del Castell is known for making wines and vintage Cava with personality in the organic winemaking tradition. They make wines under the Suriol brand which are all estate bottled fruit and then they make the Azimut line from purchased grapes from their neighbors, all of whom work organically. The Can Suriol vineyards and winery are situated in Alt Penedes, Province of Barcelona, Catalunya. This region is justifiably famous for producing fine wines and cava. The cultivation of the Can Suriol vineyards is done by 100% organic methods as certified by the CCPAE (until 2007 NOP certification). - Jenny & Francois
Patrimonio - France
A thought provoking wine and one of the best representations of what we would enjoy sipping in early Spring. Comes from the French island, Corsica. Produced by a brother and sister duo, who are 5th generation winemakers. On the nose, citrus, creaminess, lemon meringue, tart green apple, and a touch of minerality. Lovely and round on the palate. The texture and feel is light and bright yet still complex. Medium acidity. Best paired with a lemony dish, such as a crisp arugula salad drizzled with a lemon vinaigrette and topped with salmon. You could also try lemon roasted chicken, asparagus, a soft cheese board. Stay away from fried foods, pizza, fries, or even ham. Play with the fact that this has a really nice acidic backbone, is complex, and it's not just your regular Glou Glou!
Pairings: Salad, Salmon, Cheese Board
Serving Temperature: 48°- 52°
About Clos Marfisi
Anna Halkia is a small organic female grower and winemaker in Nemea, the largest winemaking region of Greece and home to the Agiorgitiko grape (which is the most planted red Greek grape).
Anna grew up in Australia with her immigrant parents, and moved back to Nemea as an adult, to start her family with her husband. Her consciousness and care for her family had led her to organic viticulture, which, she felt, would shine more if she turned into her own wine, instead of selling her organic grapes as raw material and mixed with inferior quality grapes. In the early 2000s, she decided to create a basic winemaking facility in the back of her house, where the family’s vineyards are located. The lack of investment forced her to rely on basic technology and natural winemaking. There was no surplus of funds to buy lab yeasts and enzymes, which a consulting oenologist had advised her to do, so necessity turned her to wild fermentation and lo-fi winemaking. Her wines, naturally, earned a following, due to their raw expression of the organic fruit. Anna also applied and received her organic certification, to prove part of the work that goes into the vineyard.
Today Anna is still selling locally the small-batch wines she makes from Agiorgitiko, Assyrtiko, and Roditis grapes, following the same methods she was forced to adopt, and which helped them stand out from the norm. - Eklektikon
Itata Valley - Chile
Really loving this one for Spring! Onda Brava is a partnership with a producer in California and a producer in Chile. Grapes grown from 80-year-old vines planted in granitic soils. Smells much lighter than it looks. On the nose there is some nice smokiness, cherry, and cranberry. First impressions for the palate, is that it's light, has deep fruit, a light smokiness, and a crisp watermelon freshness. Light-bodied and easy to drink! Best for BBQ's serving up smoked meats such as ribs, or grilled portobello mushrooms. Or even a falafel pita with french fries!
Pairings: BBQ, Picnic Food, Grilled Mushrooms
Serving Temperature: 48°- 52°
About Onda Brava
Since 2013, I’ve been fortunate to spend a significant amount of time producing wines in Itata, Chile. Together with Leo Erazo and our friends and families, we’ve been exploring and furthering our understanding of the ancient own-rooted and unirrigated bush vines of the Itata hills. The resulting projects are Onda Brava and A Los Viñateros Bravos. - Onda Brava
Lombardy - Italy
A medium-bodied Italian blend of Barbera, and Merlot. A really interesting, daily drinking, easy price point red wine for pairing with food! On the nose, it has tons of fruit such as red cherry and plum, floral, earthy and herbaceous notes. A pretty rustic wine. Structured and feels more like an expression of Merlot than Barbera. The perfect go to wine for a heavier than usual dish or even perfect as an Italian table wine! Pair with eggplant parmesan, or other general Italian food such as Lasagna.This is the stealth natural wine you bring to a dinner party where the guests are afraid of natural wine, so you let everyone try it and BOOM, you shock your guests with how good natural wine is!
Pairings: Blue Cheese, Pasta, Grilled Meat
Serving Temperature: 50°- 55°
About Castello di Stefanago
Castello di Stefanago is the result of generations of grapes: The Baruffaldis have strived to maintain respect for the terroir as well as the earth in their winemaking. The winery is located in Lombardy in the Oltrepo Pavese hills at between 320 and 470 meters above sea level. The cellars are in the castle which still remains from the fourteenth century in the center of the property, around which there are about eighteen hectares of vines and 135 hectares of meadows, forests, orchards, and arable land.
Antonio and Giacomo Baruffaldi have long followed organic farming, striving to achieve healthy, natural grapes, which are harvested at the appropriate level of maturity and reflect the terroir on which they are grown. In the cellar, the Baruffaldis keep in mind the natural inclinations of each must, of the natural evolution of each cuvé, using barrels of various woods and sizes. The vineyard currently produces Riesling Renano, Pinot Grigio, Müller-Thurgau, Chardonnay, Croatina (Bonarda), Barbera, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlo, Uva Rara, and Pinot Nero. - Savio Soares
California - USA
A blend of Chenin Blanc, Riesling, Pinot Gris, Albariño, and Verdejo, all collected from different vineyards in California. A great and unique expression of a Cali blend. Quite deep in color. A ton of depth on the nose with aromas of stone fruit, cutie oranges, and Sicilian blood oranges. This orange has a round mouth feel, very fruit forward, crisp, textured, and medium-bodied. Similar flavors to what we got on the nose but with even more depth and a touch of vanilla. A great gateway orange wine for your red wine drinking pals or even your buttery-Chardonnay-loving-mom. Easy drinking with still tons going on! A cheese board with fruit, and close friends would be the perfect pairing.
Pairings: Blue Cheese, Duck, Dried Fruit
Serving Temperature: 48°- 52°
About Field Recordings
Winemaker Andrew Jones has a keen eye for diamonds in the rough: sites that are unknown or under-appreciated but hold enormous untapped potential. He strives for unique wines loaded with personality and a one-of-a-kind experience.
Field Recordings is winemaker Andrew Jones’ personal catalog of the people and places he values most. Our wines are all about the flavor — with none of the pretension.
Spending his days as a vine nursery fieldman planning and planting vineyards for farmers all over California, Andrew is sometimes offered small lots of their best fruit on the side. Having stood in just about every vineyard on the Central Coast, he’s all about finding those underdogs with untapped potential. As friendships are made and opportunities are embraced, Andrew produces small quantities of soulful wine from these unusual, quiet vineyards.
We offer single-vineyard wines with a sense of place and personality, as well as delightful blends under our Wonderwall and Fiction projects. These bottles are good enough to save for a special occasion … but we’re a laidback crew, so don’t feel bad about putting one back on a Tuesday night. - Field Recordings
Rheinhessen - Germany
Rosé season is on the way and this brand new wine from Weingut Schlossmuhlenhof is perfect for the deviled eggs you'll soon be making and hopeful picnics you'll be taking! Super gorgeous pink in color. A co-ferment white and red wine made into a rosé. A day of maceration and 10% was whole cluster. On the nose, very aromatic with citrus, cherry, raspberry, and cranberry. YUM on the palate! Citrus notes such as zesty lime, bright red cherry, and cranberry, with some complexity. Pair with BBQ, sausages, or salad with strawberries. A porch pounder glou glou for sure!
Pairings: Young Cheese, Antipasti, Deviled Eggs
Serving Temperature: 45°- 50°
About Weingut Schlossmuhlenhof
The Schloss Mühlenhof property is a large estate (nearly 20ha) spread across the slopes above Kettenheim, 3km south of Alzey. This size would seem reasonable, if not expected, considering the estate was started in 1846 and is now hosting the 6th generation. It began as a rye and wheat mill until the 1920s , when the small vineyard attached became the focus for the family income. The vines of that era have been replaced over time but some on the property are still as old as 45yrs. Now in the hands of Gabriele, Nicolas and Walter Michel, the farm operates ‘organically’ but not by any legal standard.
They follow what they call, ‘ecologically healthy’ farming practices, with the intent on capturing the fruity expression of the Rheinhessen style. The vineyards are worked heavily in August to reduced yields (green harvesting), cutting nearly 1/2 of their fruit. Grapes are vinified to preserve freshness while revealing depth and concentration. Considering the size of the harvest, they are experts at doing just that. The cellar does not abide by natural law. Selected yeasts, electronically monitored steel tanks, pumps and SO2 are used judiciously to hone the wine to purity and freshness.
Knowing their soils for so long (mostly limestone combinations), the family does capture a clear minerality and a distinct spirit from each varietal, from parcels as small as .4ha. The Michel’s final act (perhaps their expertise) in the cellar, brings multiple tanks together, each with their strongest asset to form deliciously drinking, full flavored wines with a direct link to the Rhienhessen region. Provided the Michel’s continue in this way, there will be no shortage of this kind of wine along the Rhine, for the generations to come. - Savio Soares
Rhône Valley - France
A deep ruby-colored wine originating from 20+year old vines. A mix of Grenache and Syrah. Another one of those stealth natural bottles of wine to let your friends taste. This is a very classic style of a Rhône red. Deep in color. On the nose it's earthy, has dark fruit, and an indescribable meatiness. Full-bodied, with medium tannin on the palate. Notes of dark fruits, and violets, with a nice complexity and a long finish. A bit rustic overall. The perfect food wine that pairs effortlessly with a range of occasions and palates. Try it with lamb, potatoes, anything with lots of butter, or chicken pot pie.
Pairings: Lamb, Chicken Pot Pie, Grilled Meat
Serving Temperature: 55°-58°
About Vignerons Ardechois
"Wine producers and growers, we are a unique pool of 12 wineries located in Southern Ardèche since 1967.
On our 6000-hectare vineyard, spread out over a mosaic of terroirs, a thousand families of winegrowers work the vineyard with passion, respecting Humanity and Nature.
Following in the footsteps of countless generations, wtih knowledge and expertise being passed down from Successor to Sucessors. Methodical pruning in the harshness of winter, vineyard grassing to preserve the life of the soil, green harvest to maintain small yields so that each bay can give its full potential. Followed by the meticulous blending, vine after vine.
Time and again, searching for this fine balance between the hand of man and the expression of soil to bring together a wine translating all the facets of our terroirs." - Vignerons Ardechois
Western Cape - South Africa
We love when we can get an aged orange wine! Aged orange wine really gives off amazing honey and nuttiness characteristics that is rare, and usually really expensive to find in natural wine. Three Foxes is a partnership between Pascal Schildt, the importer, and some local producers in Western Cape. A blend of Clairette Blanche and Semillon from 70+ year old vineyards. The Clairette spend 6 months on skins before being pressed. The Semillon is pressed off immediately after harvesting. The result is a bright, acidic wine with great depth and concentration from the extended skin contact. On the nose, lots of honey characteristics. For the palate, honey suckle, some creaminess, muted fruit such as yellow apple, and floral.
Pairings: Seafood, White Meat, Tapas
Serving Instructions: 50°- 55°
About The Three Foxes
The Three Foxes are naturally made wines from the Swartland region north of Cape Town. Grapes are sourced from some of the most exciting vineyards of this region and the focus lies with Syrah and mediterranean grape varieties. Every year we search out an interesting parcel of something special (ex. Sangiovese 2008, Roussanne 2009, Mouvèdre 2011, Carignan 2012, Clairette 2013) from which a second wine comes to life. All natural ferments, no new wood, no enzymes, no filtration not fining - these wines are a pure expression of their vineyard sites.
Vinho Verde - Portugal
All of the varietals are fermented in stainless steel other than the Arinto grape, which is fermented in concrete. Ground chestnut flowers are used in fermentation to help stabilize the procedure. A super light and refreshing red that we recommend chilling for around 30-40 minutes before serving. Tons of bright red fruit such as cherries on the nose, a touch of jamminess, and vegetal notes such as green pepper. Taste wise it's very crushable! A Glou Glou wine with low tannin. Under ripe fruit with pepper notes on the palate. Have this red with food you would typically pair with a white. Try with fish, Asian food, or a slightly spicy Pad Thai.
Pairings: Fish, Asian Food, Grilled Vegetables
Serving Temperature: 48°- 52°
About Bojo do Luar
The Bojo do Luar project came to life during a trip Savio made to the Vinho Verde region. Here he met Fernando Paiva, a biodynamic producer who has been experimenting with adding ground chestnut flowers to the grapes and must before fermentation began. Meanwhile he’s halted using SO2 altogether since 2017.
Fernando is a regional reference for non-interventionist winemaking. He was the first Portuguese producer to acquire the DEMETER certification and through him Savio met another producer, Antonio Sousa, who practiced biodynamic viticulture, but still used traditional and conventional winemaking methods in the cellar.
Savio was undeterred and saw this as an opportunity: to use the traditional autochthonous varietals of Northern Portugal, and apply his knowledge and experience of many decades working with French producers, mainly in Burgundy and Loire.
With Antonio’s winemaking experience and openness to experiment using a non-intervention approach in the cellar, the Bojo do Luar wines started to take shape. The region has a mostly cool temperate climate throughout Spring, then very warm days, and cool nights until the harvest in September. Five red grape varietals and three whites were chosen for their natural high levels of tartaric acids and low PH. -Savio Soares Selections
Lemnos - Greece
A very aromatic orange wine from Lemnos Island. The name Terra Ambera refers to the sulphuric volcanic soil that the vines grow on. Spending 5 days on the skins in stainless steel as well as contact with the lees the entire time. Quite aromatic on the nose, which is typical for Muscat of Alexandria. Both sharp and round on the palate with lively fruit such as citrus, bright florals, a nice acidic backbone, and a bit of creaminess. Have by itself or with an olive oil garlicky pasta, a seafood pasta, or a grilled shrimp platter.
Pairings: Charcuterie, Soft Cheese, Pasta
Serving Instructions: 48°- 52°
"Manolis Garalis is a third generation wine grower. With an ambition to see his high quality organic grapes turned into first class wine, he launched his own winery in 2006 and released his first wines in 2007. He cultivates Lemnos island’s Limnio and Muscat of Alexandria, organically (certified), in 5 hectares of sulphuric volcanic soil.
Limnio is the oldest referenced grape in the world, as mentioned by Aristotle, Homer and other ancient Greek philosophers as “Limnia Ampelos”, and has been on the island for thousands of years. Muscat of Alexandria has become the main grape since the 1920’s, when brought by Lemnian immigrants from Egypt.
Lemnos is a volcanic island, and Garalis’ approach is “hands-off” without any addition of yeasts or other additives, to express this unique terroir in its pure form. - Eklektikon"
Sardinia - Italy
Great for spring! Praja, the producer name, means beach in Sardinian. Monica is the grape which is native to Sardinia. This light-bodied zesty red is fermented with native yeasts in cavernous cement tanks that reside under a house at the winery. First, give it around 30 minutes in the fridge. It's quite dark in color. Deep plum, dark cherry, violets, with a moody feeling on the nose. Light and bright for the body with low tannin. Best to be served with southern Mediterranean food, Lebanese food, Turkish food, or any food that is herb forward!
Pairings: Seafood, Olives, Pasta
Serving Instructions: 48°-52°
Sergio Loi is a 4th generation traditional Sardinian producer, whose family winery from the early 900s has always practiced no chemical farming and minimum intervention in the cellar. The Cardedu [car-DAY-do] vineyards are located on the island’s sparsely populated Southeast, where soils are crumbling granite near the coast, and schist in ragged-dry cliffs around Jerzu. - Portovino
Maryland - USA
Save this for a warm day! A very unique Chambourcin rosé blended with piquette blanc AND piquette rouge. Making it a co-ferment, piquette, wine blend! Low in alcohol and hazy pink color. Aromas of tart bright red cherry, herbs, and raspberry vinegar. Tastes like sea breeze, white cherry, sage and gooseberry. A simple, lean, fun to drink wine made for sunny outdoor moments. Pairing wise, do chips on the beach!
Pairings: Spicy Food, Picnic Food, Asian Food
Serving Temperature: 45°- 50°
About Old Westminster
"The Baker family, established in 1985, didn’t always know they would spend their lives making wine together.
Jay & Virginia, founders of the family, always dreamed of working with their children and preserving their farm. In 2008, all three of their children – Drew, Lisa and Ashli – were away at college, and they found themselves empty nesters. It was time to either put their land to work, or move on.
Upon discovering that grapevines have an affinity for rocky soil, elevation, abundant sunshine and a steady year-round breeze – all characteristics of their land – the family explored the idea of planting a vineyard and starting a winery together.
Today, Jay & Virginia support their children in the family’s wine business. And, as you can imagine, they’re enjoying the view. Not just of the flourishing vineyard, but also of the energy and determination they see in Drew, Lisa and Ashli building this great thing together. They love their children’s synergy and their ambition to put Maryland wine on the world map.
Drew is Old Westminster’s vigneron. At age 22 he planted the first 7,600 grape vines on the family farm. Each year he travels the world studying his craft and honing his skills. Drew is an entrepreneur and a leader; he pours his energy into growing great American wines on the family’s Maryland farm. The second in line is Lisa (27), Old Westminster’s talented winemaker. Lisa, a chemist by education, has been crafting some of the best wines in Maryland since she was 23 years old; wines that are not only a pleasure to drink, but also reflect the region’s unique geologies and climate. Her experience making wine stretches from the hills of northern Maryland to Sonoma, California. She loves exercising her passion for science through the art of crafting delicious wines. Then to tie it all together, there’s Ashli, the youngest. She’s Old Westminster’s “people person”. She’s passionate about building an exceptional, wine-centered experience at the Tasting Room by sharing the stories of our wines, connecting visitors with their local farmers and making sure everyone leaves with a smile.
Drew, Lisa, and Ashli are young, smart and eager to jettison every negative stereotype ever leveled against Maryland wine, and replace them with wines of renown, forging a new reputation for wine in the Old Line State."
Wine Evaluation Sheet
Want to have some fun evaluating and taking note on your wine? Check out our natural wine tasting sheets we made special for the club!