May Wine Club

Weingut Leiner – Riesling 2021 1L

The vibe: Riesling is one of those varietals that gets a lot of undeserved bad press. Like Lambrusco and Moscato, Riesling is generally synonymous with sweet wine. But these are all just grapes, and winemakers can do what they want with them. While we don’t bash sweet wines, fermenting the wine dry lends latitude to the palate and profile of the finished wine. Secondary flavors can rise to the surface and nuances you couldn’t detect before are suddenly exploding from the glass. This Riesling is a whole heckin’ liter of electricity. It’s got acid. It’s got minerality. It’s got that citrus fruit-sedimentary power combo that showcases the best of what Riesling can be. A cooler microclimate ensures a longer ripening period and concentrates the acid and terroir – which is calcium-rich loess deposited by ancient glaciers. It all shines through in this expression and it’s all the better for it. If you weren’t a fan of Riesling before, I’ll bet you are now!

The winemaker: Jurgen took over the winery from his father in 1974, cultivating vines biodynamically since 2005 and attaining Demeter certification in 2011. He personally collects and concocts herbal teas and compost additions for the health and vitality of the vines and places great value on maintaining harmony in the vineyards, aligning natural growing cycles with cosmic cycles and cultivating only when everything is in balance.

The geeky details: 100% Riesling. Biodynamically grown and hand-harvested. Fermented with native yeast in stainless steel. Bottled unfined and unfiltered at a bone-dry 4g/L of residual sugar. 

Serve: Chilled

Food pairing: Dry Riesling goes great with anything spicy or salty. Try Thai foods like curry or Khao Soi or Indian dishes like Biryani and Tandoori. Duck, chicken and pork are all good meat pairings as are seafoods like shrimp and crab.

Album pairing: Melodiesinfonie – Fragments


Succes – ‘Patxanga’ Rosado 2022 

The vibe: Let me tell you, having just visited Catalonia, this region should be on every wine enthusiast’s shortlist. While I (hi, it’s Nick) didn’t venture out to the winemaking regions, wine bars like Bar Brutal and so many others offer an incredible variety of natural wine from all over the region right in the heart of Barcelona. Succes happens to be on their glass list often and for good reason! While the region is known for crowd-pleasing Cavas and cheap rosé, winemakers like Succes are pushing the boundaries using indigenous grapes like, in this case, Trepat. Berry-forward and so crushable, this wine is singing and like the label, makes us dream of watermelon on the beach.  

The winemaker: Albert Canela and Mariona Vendrell started making wine in 2011 when they were just 20. Albert’s family has grown vines in the area for generations, which allows them connections to source organically grown old vine fruit owned by local abuelos.  

The geeky details: 100% Trepat from 40 year-old organic bush-trained vines. Calcareous clay, 400m elevation. Hand-picked and sorted then pressed into stainless steel where it is aged and bottled without sulfur additions.    

Serve: Chilled 

Food pairing: As the label suggests, pair this picnic popper with your beach-bound basket of fresh fruit, bread, cheese, and charcuterie cuts. 

Album pairing: SiR – Chasing Summer


Limited Addition – Cabernet Franc Field Blend 2022

The vibe: We have been huge fans of Limited Addition since the shop’s inception. For starters, they’re incredibly (like, seriously extremely) educated and experienced winemakers. More on that below. Leveraging this experience to craft wines that are honest to the time and place they’re from results in some of the purest and most honest and unique expressions in the Willamette Valley. While they do work with a bunch of less common varietals, this Cab Franc is unique for other reasons. For starters, it’s deliciously juicy for having such a textural, full body. Due to the microclimate in the northern Willamette, the fruit undergoes full physical ripening at low alcohol, but with the absence of pyrazines (the compound in certain varietals that causes “green” aromas like bell pepper, grassiness, and herbal aromas). It’s a cab franc with almost pinot-levels of terroir expressiveness. It is blackcurrant. It is tobacco leaf. It is volcanic soil. And it is incredible. 

The winemaker: Bree and Chad Stock bring some serious experience to the Willamette wine scene. Chad (formerly of Minimus, Omero, and Origin) has a BA in Enology and launched his first wine brand “Minimus” in 2011, exploring viticulture and wine production theory across the state of Oregon. He is a top consultant in the state for minimal intervention winemaking. Bree has been a Master of Wine since 2016, holding one of the highest qualifications in the wine industry. For context, there are only 354 Masters of Wine in the world, and Bree is the only woman in the PNW with this achievement. She is also a certified WSET educator and sits on the boards of Assemblage Women in Wine and Demeter Biodynamic.

The geeky details: A blend of 100% Cabernet Franc from old and young vine sites. 70% whole cluster fermentation followed by elevage in mostly new neutral barrels.

Serve: Cellar temp (very light chill)

Food pairing: This wine could go so many ways depending on your vibe. You could chill it down and keep things casual with a juicy smash burger or bbq veggies and smoked meats. This would go amazing with cheeses – goat or pecorino or even some brie. Because it’s not particularly herbal (no pyrazines) it would likely cut through fatty foods nicely, much like lighter acid-driven varietals like pinot or gamay. And if you’re tapping into your classy side, French bistro food would pair incredibly.

Album pairing: Okvsho – A Place Between Us





Azienda Agricola Gaudioso – ‘Gaudioso’ Syrah 2019

The vibe: We love a 12% Syrah. We also love an island red. Gaudioso puts a Sicilian spin on Syrah with this super fun and funky example. It’s in a clear bottle, the winemaker’s signal that this red is ready for drinking RIGHT NOW. Bright red fruit notes of cherry and pomegranate are the high note to the grassy and spiced vanilla undertones. Harvested the final week of August, it maintains a lightness and acidity atypical for reds of this region. You know where we’re going with this…it’s the perfect chillable red for spring in Seattle. If it’s hot out, throw a good chill on it. Overcast? Perfect – it’s still a Syrah! This is one for every occasion, and it keeps things interesting with a swift kick of acid and vibrant fruity tones. 

The winemaker:  Azienda Agricola Gaudioso is a 30ha biodynamic farm located in Partanna, Sicily, with about 7ha under vine. Though they are a younger winery, they come from several generations of Sicilian winemakers. Along with olives grown for oil, they grow both indigenous and French varietals without the use of pesticides or herbicides and follow low intervention winemaking practices in the cellar.  

The geeky details: 100% Syrah planted in 1998 on clay, sandy soil. Spontaneously fermented in stainless steel with just 8 days of skin contact without temperature control. Bottled unfined and unfiltered with minimal sulfur additions at bottling (<25mg/l).

Serve: Start with a light chill, see how it evolves as it warms in the glass.

Food pairing: Syrah typically pairs great with intense flavors like grilled meats and vegetables. A hearty Sicilian-inspired stew comes to mind. Eggplant Caponata would probably work too – since this wine is so light in body and alcohol. Muffuletta, mmm. Wait. Arancini! You know what? Just put a whole Sicilian spread together and let me know your findings.

Album pairing: Nu Genea – Bar Mediterraneo