2005 Domaine Lionnet, Terre Brûlée Cornas, $70
Winery info: A small domaine in the northern Rhône village of Cornas where the Lionnet family have been growing grapes since 1575. It is now run by Corinne Lionnet and her husband, Ludovic Izerable, who relocated there from Grenoble.
Winemaker: Ludovic Izerable and Corinne Lionnet
Vineyard source: Their Cornas vineyards consist of seven parcels, with vines aging from 40 to 80 years in age, planted on steep, terraced southeast-facing slopes. They farm organically.
Flavor profile: Muscular, rich and full-bodied, this powerful wine is layered with dark fruit, spice and earthy minerality.
Production/Availability: We bought everything the distributor had and still have it in stock.
Drinkability: With ten years in the bottle now, this one is drinking well now, but it has the power to age for another three to five years.
Food Pairing: Lamb!
2014 Domaine Vacheron, Sancerre Blanc, $35
Winery info: The Vacheron family has grown grapes in Sancerre since the turn of the century. In addition to whites, they also produce Pinot Noir and are one of the largest producers of Sancerre rouge. Today they tend 11 hectares of Pinot Noir and 29 hectares of Sauvignon Blanc. They have converted to biodynamic viticulture and their wines are known for being some of the most terroir-driven in the appellation.
Winemaker: Cousins Jean-Laurent and Jean-Dominique Vacheron
Grapes: 100% Sauvignon Blanc
Vineyard source: Grown on a mix of flint and chalk soils.
Flavor profile: Aromas of grapefruit zest and gunflint. Pure and fresh, with amazing minerality and clean, fresh citrus flavors.
Availability: Very limited, although we still have some available.
Drinkability: Very tasty now, although it could still develop more depth and complexity for another couple of years.
Food Pairing: Poultry, goat cheese, poached trout