Dirk’s Cuvée

By Dirk Smits

A blend of wine & spirits musings, tastings and tidings

Come back to this page to follow what is happening in the world of wine and spirits. I will constantly update it with new articles.

Contact: dirk.smits@gayot.com

Cheers!

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WINE OF THE WEEK

> More than just a review of the wine itself. Travel where the wine was originated, with the story and history of the vineyards and winemaker.
ARGENTINA
Catena Zapata, “Catena” Malbec 2018 | Mendoza – February 15, 2021
FRANCE
Amiral de Beychevelle, St.-Julien 2017, Château Beychevelle | Bordeaux– December 21, 2020
Bénédicte & Stéphane Tissot, Patchwork, Chardonnay 2018 | Arbois September 28, 2020
Champagne Deutz, Amour de Deutz Rosé 2009 | Champagne – February 8, 2021
Château La Rabotine, Sancerre 2018 | SancerreApril 5, 2021
Château Lassègue, Saint-Émilion Grand Cru 2017 | Bordeaux – December 7, 2020
Clos des Lunes, Lune d’Argent, Bordeaux Blanc, 2018 | BordeauxAugust 10, 2020
Domaine Faiveley, Mercurey Premier Cru, Clos des Myglands, Monopole 2018 | BurgundyNovember 9, 2020
Domaine Laroche, Chablis Saint-Martin 2018 | ChablisApril 12, 2021
Domaines Schlumberger, Gewürztraminer, Grand Cru “Kessler” 2015 | Alsace – March 1, 2021
Domaine Zind-Humbrecht, Zind, Vin de France, 2018 | AlsaceSeptember 14, 2020
Georges Duboeuf, Beaujolais Nouveau 2020 | Beaujolais – November 23, 2020
TerraVentoux, Terra Solis Intuition, 2017 | VentouxAugust 31, 2020
GEORGIA
Château Mukhrani, Saperavi, Kakheti 2017 – March 29, 2021
GERMANY
Meyer-Näkel, Blue Slate, Pinot Noir, 2018 | Ahr – October 26, 2020
GREECE
Santo Winery, Assyrtiko, Santorini, 2019 – February 22, 2021
ITALY
Castello di Fonterutoli, Chianti Classico, Gran Selezione DOCG 2017 | Tuscany – November 16, 2020
Col d’Orcia Brunello di Montalcino | Tuscany – March 8, 2021
Luigi Maffini, Kleos, Cilento Aglianico 2017 | Campania – August 3, 2020
Marchesi di Grésy, Barbaresco, Martinenga 2017 | Piedmont – December 28, 2020
Poliziano, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano 2017 | Tuscany – November 30, 2020
Ruggero di Bardo, Susumaniello, 2019 | Puglia – January 11, 2021
Saracco, Moscato d’Asti 2019March 22, 2021
Tenuta Sant’Antonio, Amarone della Valpolicella, Antonio Castagnedi 2015 | VenetoOctober 19, 2020
Travaglini, Gattinara 2016 | Piedmont October 5, 2020
MEXICO
Casa Madero, 3V, 2018 | Valle de ParrasSeptember 7, 2020
PORTUGAL
Azores Wine Company, Tinto Vulcânico, Açores  DOC, 2018 | Azores February 1, 2021
Quinta da Alorna, Touriga Nacional and Cabernet Sauvignon Reserva, 2015 | TejoSeptember 21, 2020
SLOVAKIA
Château Belá, Riesling 2018 | Sturovo – July 27, 2020
SOUTH AFRICA
Rustenberg, John X. Merriman 2015 | Stellenbosch,August 17, 2020
U.S.A.
Alma Rosa, El Jabali, Pinot Noir, Sta. Rita Hills 2018 | Santa Barbara County, CA – October 12, 2020
Frank Family Vineyards, Zinfandel 2018 | Napa Valley, CAJanuary 18, 2021
Hearst Ranch Winery, Reserve GSM, 2018 | Paso Robles, CAJanuary 25, 2021
Honig, Sauvignon Blanc 2019 | North Coast, CAAugust 24, 2020
Mi Sueño Winery, Syrah 2017 | Napa Valley, CADecember 14, 2020
Palmaz Vineyards, Riesling “Louise” 2017 | Napa Valley, CAJanuary 4, 2021
Stinson Vineyards, Meritage, 2016 | Monticello, VirginiaMarch 15, 2021
Tablas Creek Vineyard, Côtes de Tablas, Adelaida District, 2018 | Paso Robles, CANovember 2, 2020

WINERY PROFILES

Champagne Charles Heidsieck, Reims, France
Champagne Drappier, Urville, France
Champagne Gaston Chiquet, Dizy, France
Champagne Jean Lallement, Verzenay, France
Champagne Laurent-Perrier, Tours-sur-Marne, France
Champagne Nicolas Maillart, Ecueil, France
Champagne Piper-Heidsieck, Reims, France
Champagne Vilmar & Cie, Rilly-la-Montagne, France

BEST OF LISTS

Best Brut Rosé Champagnes
Best Kosher Wines
Best Non-Vintage Champagnes
Best Prestige Champagnes (Tête de Cuvée)
Best Valentine’s Day Wines
Whiskey Cocktail Recipes for St. Patrick’s Day

WINE DINNERS

Chef Celestino Drago, Managing partner Piero Selvaggio, GAYOT’s Wine & Spirits Editor Dirk Smits, Sophie Gayot



Exclusive: Restaurateur Piero Selvaggio Joins Drago Centro’s Team

Watch Dirk Smits discussing with Piero Selvaggio the wines served during the dinner.


Sophie Gayot, Chef Celestino Drago, Managing partner Piero Selvaggio, GAYOT’s Wine & Spirits Editor Dirk Smits





About a private dinner where these wines were served.

Opening bottles of long-aged wine can be a hit-or-miss experience. Find out which vintages from several French selections still provided sublime sipping with my tasting notes.




WINE CLASS

Champagne Bottle Sizes
Grape Varietal Definition: Aglianico
Grape Varietal Definition: Riesling
Grape Varietal Definition:: Sauvignon Blanc
Grape Varietal Definition: Sémillon
Health Benefits of Wine