Metro Wines Blogs

Metro Wines Asheville, NC

Brickmason by Klinker Brick

*** BIG RED of THE WEEK ***

Image result for klinker brick brickmason

A blend 80% Zinfandel, 10% Syrah, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Petite Sirah, this wine has deep red fruit aromas lead into notes of toasty vanilla with firm tannins and bold structure.

$17.99 and, unlike online, Available!

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Asheville Wine Focus Group: December

News Release: Monday, November 18th, 2019

About: Asheville Wine Focus Group
Join us on December 11th from 5:30 to 6:30 @MetroWines to participate in The Asheville Wine Focus Group hosted by Volio Imports and Empire Distribution.
"Volio would like to see more placements of their wines @MetroWines," says Gina Trippi, co-owner of MetroWines. "You taste and help us decide!"
The event is "on the house" but you must reserve your seat. Call (828) 575-9525 or online here:
Event pricing on all bottles poured.
Contact for MetroWines: Gina Trippi
Charlotte Street! It's the Next BIG Thing!
"Big Shop Selection. Small Shop Service"
Shop:  828-575-9525
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The Immigrant for Thanksgiving


Lettie Teague Talks Domestic Wines for Thanksgiving.
Yeah, We Got That!

What Could Be More Pilgrims at Plymouth Rock Than....

"The Immigrant" from Donati

100% Merlot in Steel Tank Fermentation with Oak Aging.
Aromas of cherry, boysenberry, tobacco and white pepper
lead into a layered palate of mocha, raspberry,
and cranberry sauce wrapped in a complex oak structure.
Solid finish closing with a touch of black pepper.

About Donati: 
As a young boy, Ron Donati grew up in South San Francisco,
the son of a first generation Italian-American family. One of his fondest memories was
the sights and smells of his grandfather making wine in his basement. Like most Italian immigrants,
Albino Donati made his own wine for the family dinner table. As an adult, Ron became a successful entrepreneur with a penchant for making quality products that were attainable to all, not just a select few. This same passion serves as the foundation and guiding mission of
Donati Family Vineyardtoday.
It is our goal to produce wines of exceptional quality regardless of budget.

About the (Woman) Winemaker: 
Briana Heywood joined the Donati Family Vineyard team in 2016 as Head Winemaker.
She has been involved in the wine industry for the past 10 years and gained her knowledge primarily through hands-on experience. Prior to starting at Donati, Briana was Enologist at JLohr Wines in Paso Robles for the past 7 years, along with prior internships atEberle Winery and Gallo Vineyards. She earned her Enology and Wine Business degrees from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, in 2009.

Nothing, not no way, not no how! 
could be more perfect for Thanksgiving!

$29.99 at and UNavailable
$34.80 in Ithaca, NY

(just not the Thanksgiving Spirit)

$29 @MetroWines and AVAILABLE!

Spicewalla from Asheville's Meherwan Irani
Makes Oprah's Favorite Things List of 2019!

Image result for meherwan irani

We @MetroWines were proud to pair wines with Meherwan Irani's
flavors at Asheville's premier food festival, Chow Chow.
The Box of 3 Indian Spices Collection @MetroWines, $12.99 
The set is perfect for a stocking stuffer, dinner host Gift
or addition to your spice rack!

Some dispute the quest for authenticity.

But any cook knows the deveil is in the details, and that is the spice.

Shop the Real Thing @Metr

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Blind Tasting League: December

Thursday, December 19th
Blind Tasting League with Andy Hale

Image result for blind tasting league

Reserve your seat by calling (828) 575-9525

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Clarendelle White Bordeaux and The Cheffe

From The MetroWines Book Review Department

The Cheffe by Marie NDiaye
From the Booker Prize-nominated author of Three Strong Women: 
an elegant, hypnotic new novel about a legendary French female
chef–the facts her life, the nearly ineffable qualities of her cooking,
and the obsessive, sometimes destructive desire for purity of taste
and experience that shaped her life.

MARIE NDIAYE, born in Pithiviers, France, in 1967; spent her childhood
with her French mother (her father was Senegalese); and studied linguistics
at the Sorbonne. She was only eighteen when her first work was published.
Awarded the prestigious Prix Femina for her novel Rosie Carpein 2001; 
in 2009, the Prix Goncourt for Three Strong Women; and in 2015,
Gold Medal in Arts from Kennedy Center International Committee on the Arts. 

Book Available at Malaprops here:

Your Read it With Wine @MetroWines
Since the book is based in Bordeaux, let's do Bordeaux.
But, Red Bordeaux is really for food so let's go White!
2018 Clarendelle, $22

Image result for clarendelle 2018 white bordeaux
Clarendelle is vinified to drink young. The wine can be decanted for 20-30 minutes
or up to 1 hour. This allows the wine to soften and open its perfume.
Older vintages need very little decanting, just enough to remove the sediment.

A blend of 42%Smillon, 30%Sauvignon Blanc and 28% Muscadelle, is a beautiful golden yellow color with a green glow, the wines are marked by roundness
and a beautiful aromatic power. There are aromas of apricot, white peach,
but also grapefruit. The wines are of great minerality, with powerful and fresh fruit flavors in all its brilliance, density and structure of a great white wine.

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Stock Your Cellar with MetroWines

Wine Cellars are Out of The Basement and Beautiful
BUT, they still need to be stocked !!

Image result for wall street journal mansion wine cellar
!! And Stocking a Cellar is another NOT DYI Project !!
*** Call John Kerr ***
of The Asheville School of Wine @Metrowines

(828) 575-9525
Live life large. I probably don't need to remind you:
you're not getting any younger. Just sayin'.....

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Iron and Sand

*** BIG RED of THE WEEK ***

Iron & Sand, Paso Robles
$28 and IN Stock! Holidays are Coming. Live it UP!

Image result for iron and sand cabernet

Wine Enthusiast, 92 Points

"The black fruit aroma is reserved on the nose of this bottling, allowing violet,
stone, loam and a hint of herbs to come to the forefront. The dry palate is cohesive
in flavors of black cherry, purple flowers and soil, with a hint of black olive.
The subtleties will benefit from cellaring. Drink 2021–2032."

John Kerr of The Asheville School of Wine says:
"This is a high quality wine that offers Big Bang for the buck competing with and beating Napa Cabs at $50 or more. Done in Classic California Cabernet style,
the wine is deep and rich with a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon,
Petit Verdot and Petite Sirah."

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Sparkling Class

Tuesday, December 17th

Sparkling Class with Andy Hale
5:30 to 6:30 @MetroWines $25

Image result for greyhound dog with champagne
Champagne, Cava, Prosecco, Methode Champenoise?
Not all bubbles are the same nor should they be. Know your bubbles!

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Size Up the Holidays

Saturday, December 14th
1-4pm @MetroWines

"Size UP The Holidays"
Hosted by Gwen Cooper on the house
of Epiphany and Mutual Distribution 

Taste and Shop at Event Prices!

Pommery Pops Brut Champagne ~ 187ml 4pk with StrawsSparkling in All Different Sized bottles
from a four pack of individual sparkling with a cork!

to Magnums

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Wine Spectator, Market Watch and Beaujolais Nouveau

This Event was featured in Market Watch and Wine Spectator!

Saturday, November 23rd

* Beaujolais Nouveau Release Party *
and Nouveau Noir Book Signing

from 2 to 5pm @MetroWines @MetroWines

Image result for nouveau noir drew golden

*** THIS is BIG ***

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Red Blend Class: This is NOT DYI

Thursday, November 21st
Red Blend Class and Tasting
Hosted by Juniper Cooper of Mutual Distribution

Red Blends are NOT a DYI Project. To prove the point that blending
takes knowledge and experience, one of our distributors brought us carafes
of various varietal wines and said "blend it!"
It really did not go very well.
Let me say it another way, leave this to the professionals!

To make a blend that is pleasing to the palate, the winemaker must know
why and why not every varietal can or cannot work with every other varietal.
How you get there involves chemistry and climate and probably Punnett Squares!
Holy Catfish. This could get seriously exponential.

Find out What it's All About the FUN WAY with Juniper!

Image result for greyhound with red wine

$20 for Tasting with Small Bites and Presentation

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Klinker Brick- All of It - Wins


Renee Roscoe of Klinker Brick hosted The Asheville Wine Focus Group @MetroWines last night. This gathering was a little different because we were asking Group to consider whether Klinker Birck, which has 5 to 6 placements in this small shop, should have one or two of their labels voted off the island! Not only are none of the labels leaving, we might have taken in two more! Renee brought Old Ghost and 1850.


There is no way to pick a winner. Participants snapped of every, and I do mean, every bottle of Rose', Brickmason, Old Vine Zinfandel and Syrah. And customers who came in shop after the eventtasted the wines at the counter and bought four more cases. The price to quality ratio is high. In most cases, Group guessed over the shelf price.

Klinker Brick early on realized that the climate at the winery was similar to The Mediterranean and pulled up Chardonnay to focus on varietals that fared will in Mediterranean temperatures and topography. Some of the new viticultrual residents include Albarino and Dolcetto.

We talked about old vines. It seems that "old vine" means 40 years or older but some of the deep down vines at Klinker Brick are over 100 years old. They struggle, they concentrate, they simmer down into elegance.

And we talked about red blends. Not every varietal plays well together. Blending is not a DYI project and that's a fact.

We talked about the versatility and tolerance of Klinker Brick Wines. Because of the smoothness in texture, most of their wines, even some of the reds! can even work with Indian flavors. So the flavors on your Thanksgiving Table has to be a cakewalk! 

Shop crowd pleasing Klinker Brick all year @MetroWines. Clearly, it's not going anywhere soon!

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MetroWines in Wine Spectator and Market Watch

Retailers Prepare For Beaujolais Nouveau Day 

Beverage alcohol retailers nationwide are gearing up for the November release of this year’s newest French wines. 

Andy Hale, director of the Asheville School of Wine and Blind Tasting League, will celebrate Beaujolais Nouveau Day with tastings at Metro Wines in Asheville, North Carolina.
Andy Hale, director of the Asheville School of Wine and Blind Tasting League, will celebrate Beaujolais Nouveau Day with tastings at Metro Wines in Asheville, North Carolina. 

Thousands of corks will be popped on Beaujolais Nouveau Day, the third Thursday of November, to ring in the holiday season. At least 15,000 beverage alcohol retailers throughout the U.S. will participate in this year’s festivities. “Retailers are getting posters, floor stickers, banners, ties, scarves, and whatever is legal in their state,” says Dennis Kreps, co-founder of Napa Valley-based Quintessential Wines, which imports segment leader Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau. “The wine has developed and changed and gotten better over time. Harvests have been a little warmer in Beaujolais, so the wines have a more fruit-forward style.”

Though production of this year’s Beaujolais Nouveau vintage is down, the quality is considered good. Quintessential worked with its distributors and Duboeuf in order to not pass the cost of increased tariffs on French wines over to U.S. consumers. “It was pretty tough timing for Nouveau and I was really impressed with how Duboeuf came to the table,” Kreps says.

About 95% of the Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau in the U.S. is sold at the retail tier, with New York, Florida, New Jersey, Texas, and California leading the way in sales. “We are bringing new consumers into the program and educating them about what Nouveau is all about,” Kreps says.

Beyond traditional retailing, some merchants are creating unique ways to promote Beaujolais Nouveau Day. At Metro Wines in Asheville, North Carolina on November 23, author Cynthia Drew will sign copies of her mystery novel, Nouveau Noir, and a Beaujolais Nouveau tasting will follow. At the tasting, Andy Hale,director of the Asheville School of Wine and Blind Tasting League, will pour Jean Paul BrunL’Ancien Beaujolais Nouveau ($19 a 750-ml.), Domaine Dupeuble Beaujolais Nouveau ($20), Pierre Chermette Les Griottes Beaujolais Nouveau ($15), and Joseph Drouhin Beaujolais Nouveau ($15) for Metro Wines’ customers. “With pomegranate, cranberry, and red raspberry flavors, Beaujolais Nouveau goes well with Thanksgiving dinner,” Hale observes. The tasting and book signing, along with other events, are included in Metro Wines’ weekly Sunday email, sent to more than 2,000 subscribers.

Austin, Texas-based Twin Liquors, which encompasses 85 stores and 11 Marketplace locations, plans to promote Beaujolais Nouveau Day through social media and email, weekend specials, advertisements, and in-store features focused on Georges Duboeuf. “The holiday wine kick-off naturally starts in early November, but Beaujolais Nouveau Day does pave the way for more specific Thanksgiving wine conversations,” says Sandra Spalding, director of marketing at the chain.

Planning for Duboeuf’s release this year began in March with Quintessential Wines’ contest for artists to create a label for the 2019 vintage ($13 a 750-ml.). “The biggest marketing push is the label contest, which engaged more than 1 million consumers, including 680 art submissions and more than 1,300 Instagram posts this year,” Kreps says. “The artwork represents the vintage and the first wine of the harvest. Retailers are getting all the traditional point-of-sale stuff and it’s all tied to the artwork of Laura Runge, this year’s winning artist.”

Last year, Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau grew about 3% to approximately 95,000 9-liter cases in the U.S., including 11,000 cases of rosé. “The tough part about rosé is we have to start talking to Georges Duboeuf in May about how much rosé we want, so they can start working with the vineyards,” Kreps says. “They manage the vineyards to produce the right style of rosé so a lot more work goes into it. The vineyards are managed for higher acidity to produce a fresher, crisper rosé. They’re really excited about what they’ve done with the rosé this year.”

Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau will be promoted at about 200 consumer events through retailers and restaurateurs and at another 20 at French American Chamber of Commerce events nationwide. The main event will be the Beaujolais 2019 French Food & Wine Festival at Union Station at Minute Maid Park in Houston. Some 1,500 people, including Georges Duboeuf, founder of his namesake brand, and Runge plan to attend. “We want to maintain the traditional Nouveau base and bring in new consumers through art and scholarships the artists can win,” Kreps says.

Gina Trippi, co-owner, of Metro Wines, says Beaujolais wines are popular at her shop throughout the year. “People inherently know Beaujolais speaks of the joy of life and that’s why it’s good at the holidays,” she says. “It says ‘joy’ like nothing else.”

There are high expectations for this year’s Beaujolais Nouveau. “We are about to witness a quality revolution in Beaujolais Nouveau,” Asheville School’s Hale says. “Beaujolais Nouveau will always be around. It’s a fun tradition and something I’ve done every year for my Thanksgiving, and it will always be on my table.”

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 <em>Wine Jar with Fish and Aquatic Plants</em>, 14th century. Porcelain with underglaze cobalt blue decoration, 11 15/16 x 13 3/4in. (30.3 x 34.9cm). Brooklyn Museum, The William E. Hutchins Collection, Bequest of Augustus S. Hutchins, 52.87.1. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 52.87.1_side1_PS9.jpg)
This masterpiece of Chinese porcelain is an important example of early
blue-and-white ware from the imperially sponsored kilns of Jingdezhen. Four energetic fish—mackerel, whitefish, carp, and freshwater perch—are depicted swimming along the hips of the vessel; their Chinese names form a rebus for the phrase qingbai lianjie, meaning “honest and incorruptible.” The twisting leaves and stems of the eelgrass, blossoming lotuses, and other flora elegantly frame the fish and re-create the teeming pulse of a lush aquarium. The visual wordplay suggests that the jar may have been made for an elite clientele who, it was hoped,
would be inspired by the rebus’s message of rectitude while drinking their wine.

Flash Forward 2,000 Years. We DO Riedel !

Make the Holidays Special
or Give a special Gift.

Image result for riedel logo

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Red Blend Class


with Juniper Cooper of Mutual Distribution
November 21st from 5:30-6:30 @MetroWines

What is this all about? 
Is there a plan or winemaker scoops up leftovers and makes a bottle?
Can any grapes be blended together? Why do it?

Image result for greyhound drinking red wine

$20 for tasting and presentation (and a really good time) 
Sign Up by Calling (828) 575-9525

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HOMS Cinsault

We scored again!

Image result for homs cinsault amandier 2018
So this wine is 100% Cinsault. You know this grape. Yes you do!
Cinsualt is the foundation for most Rose' from Provence. But you rarely see a bottle of 100% Cinsualt Red. The truth is that much like Tannat and Cabernet Franc,
when you produce a bottle that has only one varietal, you better be right
because you can go so very wrong. HOMS gets it right.
Again, the entire staff tasted this bottle and love it. A lighter red,
this bottle would sit well on your Thanksgiving table. Flavorful yet versatile,
a wine that will complement and not overwhelm food flavors.

Teaching Moment: From Jancis Robinson:
Also spelled as Cinsaut. Widely planted throughout southern France
and Corsica. With its lighter skins and soft perfume it is particularly suitable
for rosés and fruity, early-drinking reds, although low yields are needed
to eke out much flavour. It has the advantage over 
Grenache of being easy
to pick by machine. Cinsault is used to add perfume and fruit to wines such as Minervois and Corbières. The variety withstands drought well and has been important in North Africa, Lebanon, Israel and South Africa where it is most famous as a parent of 
Pinotage. In southern Italy it is known as Ottavianello.

But Where Can I find it?
Vivino says again: "Vivino doesn’t sell this wine.
Also, we searched other online shops, but couldn’t find it for sale anywhere."

(Vivino is looking for love in all the wrong places!)
$18.99 and on the shelf @MetroWines!

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HOMS Chardonnay

Homs 2018 Chardonnay

Image result for homs chardonnay 2018
This wine is all over Europe and hugely popular
but very HARD to find, if you even can, in USA.

"Vivino doesn’t sell this wine. Also, we searched other online shops, 
but couldn’t find it for sale anywhere."

Because of Euro domination, notes and reviews are in foreign languages!
Ce Chardonnay est un vin séducteur qui distille de subtils arômes minéraux et floraux. La bouche est gourmande, tendre et justement équilibrée. Sa finale, d’une belle fraîcheur, s’achève sur une agréable sensation de légèreté.

OK. I don't know what that says. But what I do know is that the entire staff
tasted this wine and we though it was lovely. We thought HOMS Chardonnay
would please palates that prefer heavy oak to no oak at all.
All this for $16.99 @MetroWines

Still not sure? Wine Searcher lists Best Chardonnays in the World:
That's Ok. We know you had to look. I did too. Back to Planet Earth.
Operators are standing by @MetroWines to help you with HOMS!

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BIG RED of the WEEK#2
*** Portugal ***

Image result for bergamota portugal 2015 dao

From a woman wine maker, an elegant Dao made
from 80% Touriga Nacional, with Jaen,
Tinta Roriz, and others making up the balance.
The wine smells like summer blackberries at the roadside,
and opens with vanilla (due to time in oak), then gives flavors of dried fig,
blackberry, and a cocoa-date finish. Rich but not heavy.

Not available at Vivino or anywhere they searched.
Available in Canada, Ireland and Russia!
oh yeah, and MetroWines! 


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Big RED of the Week
*** Lodi ***

Image result for telios cabernet sauvignon 2014 lodi
A powerhouse collaboration between proprietor Gus Kalaris
and winemaker Bob Egelhoff, Axios is a super premium Cabernet Sauvignon
of Napa Valley "cult" status.  Axios, meaning worthy in Greek,
reflects Gus' vision to craft a wine of Bordeaux influence that represents
the richness of its' Napa Valley origin. $19.99

"This is an amazing bottle for the price. Rich. Complex. Napa!"
   John Kerr of The Asheville School of Wine

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Viognier for Thanksgiving

Viognier for Thanksgiving!
Why Not?


Image result for viognier grape

Gina Trippi of The Asheville School of Wine for the Laurel of Asheville

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