“You wouldn’t eat the same thing every day or listen to the same music every day. But people choose to drink the same wine every day? It just doesn’t make any sense to me. “ – Scott Schultz, Proprietor Jolie-Laide Winery
I couldn’t say it better myself. I first met Scott 2 years ago at a trade show hosted by his New York distributors. We had much in common, and whilst I knew of his wines, I also knew that my ability to obtain any of his miniscule quantity production was about as likely as winning this week’s Power Ball. And so I was very surprised when, shortly after that meeting, my sales rep called me and told me that Scott had asked that I be added to the allocation list of his wines – along with 11 Madison, Per Se and a few other starred restaurants. Ever since, I await his annual release like a child awaits his 3rd birthday (I don’t think kids really have any idea what birthday 1 and 2 are all about).
2018 is Scott’s 4th release. He is quoted as saying “2018 was the perfect growing season. No heat spikes but still warm. All I did was stay the f**k out of the way”. That basically sums up Scott’s philosophy. Let the grapes do the talking. But he is a maverick and he learnt the trade from some of the best of them – Pax Winery, Jaimee Motley, Tegan Passalacqua (Turley Wines), Steve Matthiasson, to name but a few. He invents and he recreates. He is the sort of wine-maker that is idolized by Brooklynites and yet he is averse to making a wine because of a fad. He doesn’t make ‘orange wine’, he makes white wine with a little color; he doesn’t follow the ‘natural wine’ route because he already practices it, in his own way. His wines are an expression of his own character and uniqueness, and they are some of the most exciting wines that are being produced in California now.
These wines are not for everyone. Which is good news because I will probably only be allocated 2 cases of each. These wines are for wine-lovers who want to invite a few friends over, serve a bunch of tasting plates and pour each of his wines and discuss them, chew on them, find fault or love in them, but above all, enjoy great wine.
The wines that I will receive are:
2018 Gamay Barsotti Vineyard El Dorado County
The Barsotti vineyard is at high elevation on granitic soil in the Sierra Foothills. The small plot of the vineyard that Scott manages is just below the lip of the hill, and so a little cooler than the rest of the vineyard. Scott therefore picks the grapes in two stages, one early, and one a little later, making for a slightly riper Gamay. The wine begins with carbonic maceration and then gets crushed by Scott’s feet! The ’18 is young, with earthy, floral and herbal notes. It’s not ‘fleshy’ but beautifully light and heady with a lot of red fruit flavors. On the delicious scale it is above and beyond.
2018 Pinot Gris Sonoma County
““The whole is greater than the sum” kind of wine. In 2018 we worked with small lots from three different sites, Windsor Oaks, Glen Oaks and Rorick Heritage, all of which were uniquely idiosyncratic all their own, but put together unwound a complex, layered and delicious combination of flavors. Picked early to preserve acidity and crushed by foot for a 3 day whole cluster cold soak which adds phenolic texture while lending a beautiful rosé Champagne-like color. All wild ferment in a combination of stainless and neutral oak then aged all in neutral barrique. Wildly perfumed of charentias melon, stone fruit, bergamot and kaffir lime leaf. This is not your grandma’s Pinot Grigio….” In his own words – Scott Schultz
2018 Melon de Bourgogne Rodnick Farm
Formerly known as Antle Vineyard, this is a dramatic high desert site in the Gabilan Mountains neighboring Pinnacles National Park. South facing slope, 1800 ft elevation overlooking Monterey with moderating coastal influence. Situated just beneath an extinct volcano with decomposed granite and limestone soils. Picked early to preserve natural acidity, whole cluster pressed to concrete eggs where it underwent spontaneous fermentation and subsequent 6 month sur lie elevage.
Chalky oyster shell, lemon verbena and citrus blossom with mouthwatering acidity.
2018 Rosé of Valdiguié
Old Vine Valdiguié (circa 1940’s) organically grown in the ‘Redvine Series’ sandy clay loam soils of the Buddha Dharma Vineyard, City of 10,000 Buddhas in Ukiah. Picked early to preserve acidity and whole cluster pressed to a combination of stainless, concrete and neutral oak for spontaneous fermentation and subsequent six month elevage.
Bright bitter orange and grapefruit citrus, strawberry, fennel with a Campari-like quinine appeal.
Scott has already sold out of all these wines at the winery. They were released to NYC yesterday and will be gone by the end of this week. I have asked for 2 cases of each – the rosé I may only get 1 case, but am working on it.
To ensure that everyone has the same shot of receiving these wines I am going to split them up and offer them only as a set of 4 wines – 1 of each bottling.
4 bottles - 1 bottle each – 1 red, 2 white, 1 rosé - $144.00
12 bottles - 3 bottles each - 3 red, 6 white, 3 rosé - $388.00
Orders must be accompanied by payment. No cancellations. Wines will probably be received Friday, June 14.