The Big Gift: Kermit Lynch Wine Club
If time after time, the wines you've enjoyed most come from Berkeley importer Kermit Lynch, then maybe you or someone you love is a candidate for -- ta da -- the Kermit Lynch Wine Club. I just about spilled my Cabernet Franc when I noticed a flier for said club stapled inside Lynch's latest newsletter. In my mind, wine clubs are not exactly associated with fascinating wines. But this one is different -- and not something I ever expected from the iconoclastic wine importer and author ("Adventures on the Wine Route" and "Inspiring Thirst").
And it actually may be a pretty good deal, two bottles a month for $39, plus, of course, tax and shipping charges.
To get an idea of the kinds of wines, go to kermitlynch.com/wineclub and check out the various wine club bulletins. December's selections, for example, are a non-vintage sparkler Clairette de Die Brut from Domaine Achard-Vincent in the Drôme Valley. It’s organic. And the domaine is run by the fifth generation of growers. The second choice is the 2008 Eloro "Spaccaforno Riofavara from southeastern Sicily, where the Padova family has been farming since the 1920s. It's a Nero d’Avola and a newcomer to the Kermit Lynch portfolio.
Both are unusual and wines I'd like to try, actually.
December's bulletin also includes a Sicilian recipe for braised lamb shank with pecorino and breadcrumbs from Christopher Lee, former head chef of Chez Panisse, to go with that Nero d'Avola.
To sign up, call (510) 524-1524 or go to kermitlynch.com/wineclub. Do it by Thursday, Dec. 22, to have the first shipment arrive in January. I also like that you can sign up for any number of months.
-- S. Irene Virbila
Photo: Kermit lynch logo. Credit: Kermit Lynch Wine Merchant