Winemaking Super Group and the Greatest Port!

                        Nathan Roberts, Jean Foillard, Duncan Meyers, Rajat Parr

                       Nathan Roberts, Jean Foillard, Duncan Meyers, Rajat Parr

Oh look, it's the wine equivalent of a super group!

I'd like to point out before I jump into it, that the men in the picture above are unusually talented. Alone they are legends, but together they make RPM. It's a Gamay Noir (THE grape of Beaujolais) sourced from Barsotti and Witters vineyards in El Dorado, California, then crushed the old way--by foot. Then one of the most over-qualified winemaking teams of all time makes a wine of extraordinary quality for $30. It boggles the mind.

The men in the picture:

You have Nathan Roberts and Duncan Meyers of Arnot-Roberts, the two mad-scientists behind some of my all-time favorite wines--we sold almost the entire state's allocation of their Syrahs in one day after a few of you took a couple bottles home on my recommendation and then you and all your friends bought the rest out. I've never been so amazed by our patronage than on that day. I know Sonoma Syrah is incredible, but almost no one has ever made an impact in Kansas with them. It's almost a wine-trade insider indulgence that isn't allowed for the public, but you all went wild for them!

I've met Nathan, and he was one of the most impressive winemakers to date, but there are absolutely no snobbish or holier-than-thou airs about him. I was blown away by how great their wines are, essentially made in a warehouse in Healdsburg, CA. They outshone anything else I had on one of my wine trips, but they were by far the most humble. I tasted through the most illustrious wines from Sonoma to Napa, and Arnot-Roberts was still somehow the most memorable.

There's also Master Sommelier and arguably one of the greatest blind tasters on the planet--Raj Parr. He became famous for running the wine program for Michael Mina's restaurant, RN74 in Seattle...which has become one the bucket-list most sought after domestic restaurants alongside The French Laundry, Mustards Grill, Eleven Madison Park, Le Bernardin, Saison, Press and Estela.

And then there's Jean Foillard. Of this list, he's the one who creates goosebumps for a Beaujolais fanatic. He is arguably the greatest winemaker in Beaujolais since the great Jules Chauvet (Jean Foillard is one of his disciples). Around thanksgiving, I suggested Cru Beaujolais (the reallygood stuff, not just the Nouveau) as a fantastic pairing with thanksgiving feasts, and we went through more than we have in the last few years combined, and then it continued AFTER the holiday. I'm glad you enjoyed them and kept coming back! Can't say how happy I am that the the wine aficionados of Johnson County and the surrounding area have embraced such great wines.

I'd like to point out before I jump into it, that the men in the picture above are unusually talented. Alone they are legends, but together they make RPM. It's a Gamay Noir (THE grape of Beaujolais) sourced from Barsotti and Witters vineyards in El Dorado, California, then crushed the old way--by foot. Then one of the most over-qualified winemaking teams of all time makes a wine of extraordinary quality for $30. It boggles the mind. 


RPM 2015 Gamay Noir

This was a life changing wine for me. It showed that tradition and innovation could coexist. I only gained access to 4 cases, so it's a bit limited and I wanted to give first chance to those who follow these writings and have a similar passion for wine.

$29.99 per bottle
4 bottles max/person
Only available
once per year

My Take:

This is the only planting of actual Gamay Noir I've ever seen in California, and being that GN is one of my favorite varietals, this is truly a shame. A few years ago I heard the most ridiculously over-powered winemaking team was crafting Gamay Noir in my original home state (KS is definitely my home state now, but I was born in CA), I had to try it. Wow.

Tasting notes:

It looks light and one would assume it is thin by appearances, then the aromas waft out. Cherries, raspberries, savory spices. Perfumed, defined, characteristically Cote du Py Morgon Cru Beaujolais in profile. I believe this is directly related to Foillard's connection, as there are blatant nods to the great producer of the mother region. There is an insane amount of character here. I simply cannot imagine a better holiday red wine. Maybe they exist, but i can't think of one.

Click here or email zach@lukasliquor.com to lock in your order before they're gone!


    Stefano Marello and Yours Truly, enjoying some tasty fortified wines!

   Stefano Marello and Yours Truly, enjoying some tasty fortified wines!

KOPKE
The Greatest Port I've Had.

I'm a regular Heinz 57, though of the crazy European mix-up of my lineage, I'm more Portuguese than anything else. And a good chunk of German. That said, it shouldn't be a surprise I love high-quality Riesling and Ports. I'm a large fan of both, and recently I was lucky enough to sit down with Stefano Marello, who represents the best Port producer I've tried. They outlived everyone else from a pure timeline standpoint, and though they don't have the advertising campaign others may call upon, hardcore Port fans whisper their name with reverence.

Here's a very long, but hopefully worth watching video I recorded tasting through an absolutely amazing lineup, where we finish with a 1966 Colheita. The greatest port I've ever tasted. Hands down.

I was going to shave the video down to sub-30 minutes, as I had an hour and 20 minutes of footage, but in the end, I just left most of it on the reel. The wines were so good, and Stefano was incredibly informative once we got going.

We go over the major characteristics of different ages and styles of their ports. It's nice having a true expert in Stefano guiding me through these beauties.

Forgive the video and audio quality, it was done with pretty basic equipment in the event room after dinner at Ya Ya's in Overland Park. The dinner was excellent, but the camera I had was not the best tool for the job. They were kind enough to let us sit around and taste through a bunch of ports. It took me a few days of tampering to make the audio somewhat clear after a file corruption.

I've since then bought a better one, so should have better video quality going forward.

Here's what we currently have and pricing:

Kopke Dry White Port 750ml- $15.99
Kopke 10 YR Tawny 750ml - $31.99
Kopke 20 YR Tawny 750ml - $61.99
Kopke 20 YR White Port 375ml- $59.99 (Most interesting wine of the lineup)
Kopke Colheita 2001 Port - $39.99
Kopke Colheita 1966 Port - $125.99 (only a few left of the two cases I had)


Thanks again for reading, and as always, I love getting your general responses, opinions and questions. Let me know what you would like me to address next!

Cheers,

Zach Cherry,
Wine Director & Certified Sommelier
Lukas Wine & Spirits Superstore, Overland Park
(913) 451-8030 x111
zach@lukasliquor.com