January 2021 | Red Club
Welcome to the January Club from MYSA Natural Wine!
A note from our founder:
We are so excited to share these wines with you and why we picked them! If you’ve been here for a while, we hope you’ll enjoy this new digital format in place of the printed wine cards. As much as we care about the sustainable practices of our natural wine producers, we also care about the ways we can reduce our own footprint on the planet. Every month, you will receive a link to a custom page with the wine tasting notes on each bottle. If you miss the “notes” section from the cards, we’ve created an even more in-depth version for you to practice your wine tasting skills with printouts at the bottom of this page!
So let’s dive in!
First of all, WELCOME to our first month of our Red Natural Wine Club! We are so excited to launch this red-only experience with you. We have created dedicated space to put these highly-allocated wines into a monthly club. We are launching with some truly special wines including a very rare Georgian gem, a highly ageable and “save for special occasion” Etna Rosso, along with some perfect daily drinkers that will go great with most of what you’re cooking this winter!
- Holly Berrigan, Founder, MYSA Natural Wine
- Innocent Dove - Kostanzis
- Vinca Minor - Mendocino Carignan
- I Custodi - Pistus Etna Rosso
- Fond Cypres - Premier Jus
- Wine Evaluation Sheet
Innocent Dove - Kostanzis
Karditsa - Greece
A natural take on a very traditional wine blend in Northern Greece of Xinomavro (a native grape) and Merlot. It feels both familiar with all the medium notes coming from the Merlot but then the Xinomavro adds a deeper kick and spice to it. I love this wine for winter because, while medium bodied, it has depth and weight to it with a strong structure. Beyond that you'll find lighter notes like strawberries and tomato that make it really enjoyable and refined with your winter dishes!
Pairings: Stews, Roasted Meats, Mushroom Risotto
Serving Temperature: 54°-58°
Kontozisis Organic Vineyards is an organic grower in Karditsa, a rural town in the region of Thessaly. Karditsa is known as the bicycle capital of Greece, and the homeland of the impressive Limniona red grape. The winery and vineyards are on the foothills of mount Agrafa, in two distinctive terroirs between Kanalia and Dafnospilia. Kontozisis has been practicing certified organic agriculture and organic vinification since 1991, one of the first to get such a certification in Greece.
His long term commitment to organic practices shows his honest approach to sustainability. Having worked only with the local market of Karditsa, organic practices were something that was not appreciated, but Kontozisis insisted on farming without chemicals, and making honest, natural wines. The few loyal fans of Kontozisis wines in Karditsa were enough to keep going throughout the years, and eventually making them available to a market that fully embraced the authenticity in those wines; the big urban centers of the United States.
Andreas Kontozisis and his partner Aphrodite Tousia are working passionately with the area’s indigenous red grape, Limniona, among others, for which they have developed proprietary vineyard techniques to get as much concentration as possible from the variety’s large grapes. All grapes are hand harvested and pruned from the low-yield (28 hectoliters / ha) estate-owned vineyards of 11 ha. Kontozisis uses no press (only free run wines) and no commercial yeasts
Vinca Minor - Mendocino Carignan
California - USA
Carignan is a wonderful grape to enjoy during winter and we LOVE this one from Vinca Minor! Jason has really perfected this wine because it was the first style he ever made and is a great expression of the Mendocino region. He also makes a field blend but the single varietal wines are really special, thus why we reserved them for the red-only club! It has juicy fruits and berries alongside medium tannin and body.
Pairings: Lamb, Pork Roast, Mushroom risotto
Serving Temperature: 54°-58°
About Vinca Minor
I Custodi - Pistus Etna Rosso
Sicily - Italy
This is a special red wine from one of Nic's favorite grapes that we find is great during the winter months! Rare and indigenous grapes grown in volcanic terroir give this red tons of minerality. Good, light acidity with blackberry, cherry, plum and earth on the palate. Lean tannins with a smooth finish.
Pairings: Pasta, Turkey, Roast
Serving Temperature: 46°-52°
About I Custodi
Mount Etna is a current darling of the Italian wine scene, and I Custodi is among the 21st-century Etna Renaissance producers who are now making wines as compelling as the active volcano’s cooled lava flows. Founder Mario Paoluzi has teamed up with Etna guru Salvo Foti and I Vigneri, the local vineyard workers who tend the ancient albarello vines, and volcanic terracing. The Etna Rosso ‘Pistus’ (mostly Nerello Mascalese) comes from Etna’s north slope, where the wines are known to be structured and savoury. In 1774, the Florentine scholar Sestini called them ‘navigabile’ or ship-worthy, keeping after long voyages. Don’t miss 150+ year old-vines mostly-Nerello cru ‘Aetneus.’ The racy Etna Bianco ‘Ante’ (mostly Carricante) comes from 900 meter high vineyards on the sea-influenced eastern slopes; raw fish come alive with this wine. ‘Alnus’ is the traditional ‘pista e mutta’ (press and rack) Etna rosato. Organic. - Portovino
Fond Cyprès - Premier Jus
Corbières - France
Premier Jus means first juice in French and I would not be mad if this were the first wine I drank for 2021! I love this wine not only because it's delicious and perfect with winter squash, but because it also feels like the finish line of 2020 running into 2021 excited for what is to come on the other side. We did it! Celebrate with a delicious French wine :)
Pairings: Salami, Stews, Squash
Serving Instructions: 45°-50°
About Fond Cyprès
From the Brigitte Bardot of Corbières and her endearing husband come the wines of Fond Cyprès, a soulful, luscious lineup of Carignan, Syrah, Grenache, Grenache Blanc, Roussanne, Viognier, Muscat, Cinsault and blends thereof. The couple, whose real names are Laetitia Ourliac & Rodolphe Gianesini, is intent on producing wines that express their sultry slice of the Languedoc — specifically, Escales, in the northernmost part of the Corbières AOC. Their domaine begins at the end of a road lined with Cypress trees and extends in either direction across 15ha of lush vegetation, a secret garden of olives, tomatoes, eggplants, wild herbs, and newly-born kittens. We first met Laetitia and Rodolphe in the deep, damp recesses of Cave Ackerman on a February afternoon in the Loire, and even then their wines were singing. But when we pulled up to their home in August and were greeted by bowls of freshly grilled palourdes, mussels, garlic, and parsley cooked in the juice we were about to drink, we understood their wines had made it feel like summer all along. - Minum Selections
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!