Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 11

European producers were drawn
to herbs and spices from far-away,
colonized lands-using citrus
peel, clove, cardamom, cacao-
contemporary producers in the
States have been inspired by their
immediate environments.
" That's the smell of our
coast, " thought winemaker Birk
O'Halloran when he realized the
sagebrush endemic to California's
coastline was in the wormwood
family. He introduced Rockwell
Vermouth Co., with its Classic Sweet and Extra Dry expressions, in 2020. For the base wine,
O'Halloran sources symphony, a
grape bred by UC Davis from muscat and grenache gris. The Sweet
smells of sarsaparilla and clove.
The Dry is all summer fruits and
hay, making an elegant aperitif
on its own or the beginnings of an
outstanding 50/50 Martini.
Steve and Jill Matthiasson,
winemakers in Napa Valley, also
turned to a UC Davis cross for the
base wine for their No. 4 Sweet
Vermouth. They work with flora,
a crossing of gewurztraminer and
semillon that was originally bred

for dessert wine. The Matthiassons
use fresh blood orange and sour
cherries from their orchard, and
homegrown cardoons, or wild artichokes, for a distinctly vegetal bitterness. The result is both earthy
and fruity. It makes an uncharacteristic Manhattan, bright and
summery, but also stands beautifully on its own with dessert.
The low-ABV trend dominating cocktails has given vermouth
a stage. For an even lower-ABV
option, there's herbal wine-
historically medicinal, like vermouth, though not fortified. Former Miss USA Nana Meriwether
has recently launched Cale, a line

of low-alcohol wines-under 5
percent-infused with botanicals.
Her first release is an intensely
floral hibiscus-laced pinot noir.
Fruity yet bone dry, it can be
sipped like a wine or spritzed,
replacing sweet vermouth in an
Americano variation.
If Americans ever start drinking
vermouth for vermouth's sake, it
may well be due to the Wine Collective-Enrique Pallares and
his partners, who set up shop in
an abandoned Sears warehouse
in Baltimore alongside a craft
brewer and a coffee roaster. Last
year, they created Vermú, a rosé
vermouth that evokes pink grape-

fruit and chamomile. Enchanting
on its own, it's sublime with a nip
of Campari and gin for a Negroniesque drink called a Marianito.
Pallares is such a champion of
vermouth that he makes a second
out of his other winery, Casa Carmen, in Maryland. Tender Is the
Night is a barrel-aged black vermouth, a rare Spanish style, flavored with black walnuts, wormwood, orange peel, herbs and
baking spices. It's herbaceous and
spiced, like a brooding grown-up
root beer when topped with soda
and a twist. It begs heaping some
good tinned fish on bread and pretending it's pintxos in Iberia. ●

Pricing
MATTHIASSON'S NO. 4 SWEET VERMOUTH Napa Valley (17% ABV; $40/375 ml); ROCKWELL VERMOUTH
CO.'S CLASSIC SWEET (16.5% ABV; $15/750 ml);
CASA CARMEN'S TENDER IS THE NIGHT (16.5% ABV;
$32/750 ml); UNCOUTH VERMOUTH'S PORCIA (17%
ABV; $35/750 ml); THE WINE COLLECTIVE'S VERMÚ
ROSÉ (16.5% ABV; $28/750 ml); CALE'S HIBISCUS
PINOT NOIR (4.5% ABV; $25/500 ml)

Visit Anderson Valley this summer to enjoy:
World Class Wines
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Wine & Spirits - June 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Wine & Spirits - June 2021

Contents
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - Cover1
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - Cover2
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 1
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 2
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 3
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - Contents
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 5
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 6
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 7
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 8
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 9
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 10
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 11
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 12
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 13
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 14
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 15
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 16
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 17
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 18
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 19
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 20
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 21
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 22
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 23
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - 24
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Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - Cover3
Wine & Spirits - June 2021 - Cover4
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/winespirits/201502
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/winespirits/201412
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/winespirits/2014winter
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/winespirits/201410
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/winespirits/2014fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/winespirits/201408
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/winespirits/201406
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/winespirits/201404
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/winespirits/201312
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/winespirits/2013winter
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/winespirits/201212
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/winespirits/2012winter
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/winespirits/201210
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/winespirits/fall2012
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/winespirits/drm_test
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/winespirits/201112
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/winespirits/201110
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com