It's November, which means only one thing in this Colorado-native's head: SKI SEASON BABY! ...but, since Tahoe probably won't be getting any powder for at least a few months, we are escaping to the Italian Alps this Thursday at Elmwood, with a lineup from Italy's northwestern most region, Valle d'Aosta.
Wedged between Switzerland and France, the valley lies in the shadows of some of Europe’s tallest peaks: ice-capped Mont Blanc and the Matterhorn (swoon...) The growing conditions in this alpine climate are nothing shy of extreme, but like all great growing regions, the struggle these vines undergo through the winter season results in beautiful concentration and high toned aromatics in the glass. There is really no better way to experience the unique wines of this region than through the lens of Domaine Grosjean, a family whose history in the area dates back to the 17th century, when, upon invitation from the Duke of Savoy, they relocated from Burgundy to this picturesque valley, nestled high in the mountains.
Bringing with them knowledge of vineyard cultivation and winemaking, the family was imperative in establishing the wine industry in Aosta. That work continues today, still in the original family, with 7 hectares of organically farmed vines. After starting out with the traditional Petit Rouge along with some Gamay, Pinot Noir and Petite Arvine, the Grosjeans have planted other local varietals such as Fumin, Cornalin, Premetta and Vuillermin. Maybe not the most familiar varietals, but don't fret: these wines will feel all so familiar with Beaujolais-like juiciness, Savoie crunch, and Piedmont aromatics. They might even displace your Poulsard on the thanksgiving table this year....
Adam Melendrez of Elevage Wine will be pouring five stunning examples of Grosjean's alpine wines, including our personal favorites, the Blanc de Noir sparkling and native Petite Arvine. Come and get a taste of the Aosta Valley, one of Italy’s finest treasures!