PRODUCER NOTES: We believe that each region has a unique food and beverage culture worth celebrating. Here in the Salish Sea, we feel it in the cool climate and the saltwater air. We strive to produce wines that are inspired by this region and accentuate the experience of the San Juan Islands, its relaxed lifestyle, fresh air and fine food. Every wine we produce is hand-crafted with intention. Our specialty is sparkling wine, made in the petillant-naturel style with as little intervention in the natural processes as possible. Every bottle finishes fermentation independently and becomes its own experience, one we trust you will both enjoy and remember.
WINEMAKING NOTES: Picked at the very last moment of harvest in Oregon on October 16th, and pressed just before the first deluge of fall rain, the fruit was a mix of pale straw and just ripe enough juicy, pale green clusters. It was hand-sorted by us and pressed at a friend’s winery near the vineyard. A long, rain soaked drive back to the Islands seems as much of the story as the long, cold ferment. We hand bottled a few days after Christmas. This one was semi-disgorged in early March using the low intervention “a la volie” method.
TASTING NOTES: Bright straw color in the glass, the Gruner has a prounounced mouse and persistant, fine effervescence. It opens with a slightly floral nose with lemon peel and green walnut. Hints of lemon pith, lentil, caraway, and cereal grain playfully emerge. Dry, acidic, and minerally, it seems serious but the 100% fun personality of Pet Nat takes over.
PAIRINGS: Fried foods, schnitzel being the obvious example but you could happily drink Grüner with fish and chips or even fried chicken. Walk on the edge and discover how especially good it is with Vietnamese food particularly summer rolls and noodle salads. Fresh cheeses like goats cheese, young pecorino or buffalo mozzarella.
Type Wine: Sparkling - White
Region: Washington, USA
Grape: Grüner Veltliner
Appellation: Columbia Gorge
PRODUCER NOTES: The owners of Archipelago Beverage Company, Chris and Marti, have been working behind the scenes with Orcas Island Winery to bring you wines from Washington. Darling Pet Monkey is their first wine under the AO Wines label.
WINEMAKING NOTES: Harvested just after 2019’s big freeze, Counoise is always one of the last grapes arriving in the cellar and hand picked, as even ripeness can be an issue. Destemmed and left whole berry, it is carefully added to the fermenter. Fermentation commences on the small amount of juice in tank, allowing for some carbonic fermentation to take place before yeast fermentation takes over. The counoise is bottled in spring to capture the bright, fresh fruit.
BLEND: 95% COUNOISE, 5% ROSE OF SYRAH
TASTING NOTES: Scents of cherry, raspberry, red currant, tarragon And fig are evident in this medium bodied cru Beaujolais- like beauty, a carbonic note of warm, spicy vanilla bean anchors a smooth, cracked Pepper kissed finish. This is what the French call a “glou glou” wine.
PAIRINGS: In Provence it is a common wine and food pairing with Tuna Niçoise. It’s delightful pepperiness compliments hearty stews and sausages. Go vegetarian and whip up some pasta with a creamy wild mushroom sauce. Black olives and sheep’s milk cheeses would work well for a starter or to finish the meal.
Type: Wine Still - Red
Producer: AO Wines
Region: Washington, United States
Appellation: Horse Heaven Hills