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Thursday, June 8
6-8 PM no reservations needed

bobal chianti classico natural wine organic biodynamic los angeles
Tonight, we are lucky to have not one but two remarkable winemakers in the shop to pour and tell us all about their wines. One winemaker is from Chianti while the other is from Valencia, but both are united in their belief in terroir-sensitive, chemical-free farming, the native grapes (sangiovese, bobal) of their respective regions, and in the wisdom of aging wine in large, old barrels, a practice that micro-doses wine with air without imparting distracting oaky flavors to it. While many modern winemakers have forsaken these traditional vessels for smaller barrels or stainless-steel vat, some stubbornly cling to the old premodern ways, and as you will discover tonight, sometimes the old ways are very good ways indeed.

From Italy, we have the delightfully cerebral Michele Braganti of Monteraponi, producer of faithfully traditional Chianti Classico wines. These are poised wines, balanced on a knife’s edge of ripeness and vivacious acidity and framed by modest levels of alcohol (13-13.5%). Part of the Monteraponi magic is surely the sensitive, organic farming on higher elevation (1200-1500 feet) vineyards, planted on hillsides of the super soft stone known in Tuscany as “galestro.” Another part of the magic are the traditional huge-ass Slavonian oak barrels known as botti grandi that Michele employs. We’re pouring two wines from Monteraponi: a Chianti Classico 2014 from younger vines, fermented in concrete vat and aged in botti for about a year, and Michele’s flagship “Baron’ Ugo” Riserva 2014, from older vines planted on his highest elevation vineyards and aged in botti for three years.

From Spain, we have the Master of Bobal, Juan Antonio Ponce. Something of a prodigy in his native region of Manchuela, Juan Antonio was already a trained enologist by the age of seventeen and started his own project to resuscitate the fortunes of the local bobal grape in 2003 when he was only 23. Bobal is a rustic grape the locals historically over cropped and made into indifferent bulk wine, but Juan Antonio knew that this native grape of Valencia could do more if given love. Tonight, Juan Antonio is pouring three bobal-based wines, to include a light, fresh 2016 rosé, and two different single-vineyard reds, both fermented in 4,000 liter (that’s big!) casks and aged in large, older oak barrel.

Bodegas Ponce ”Las Cañadas” Bobal Rosé Manchuela 2016
Bodegas Ponce “Clos Lojen” Bobal Manchuela 2016
Bodegas Ponce “La Casilla” Bobal Manchuela 2013
Monteraponi Chianti Classico 2014
Monteraponi Chianti Classico “Baron’ Ugo” Riserva 2011

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