Mixed Case: Fireside Reds

As recent temperatures rival the equities markets for precipitousness of decline, the bottles on our dinner table continue to come from more southerly appellations. Cold weather calls for rich wines, usually made in the lower half of France, and from grapes such as Syrah, Grenache and Mourvèdre.

121-Year-Old Grenache Vines. $25

The year is 1895. The United States number 44, and the president is Grover Cleveland. J Edgar Hoover and Babe Ruth are born, and inventor George Selden receives a patent for the automobile. Across the ocean in France (then a six-day crossing by boat), a vineyard of grenache is planted just outside Chateauneuf-du-Pape.

Mixed Case: Weeknight Reds

Some wines are meant for occasions — wines you’ve picked out specially, on which you’ve spent a bit extra, and for which you’re waiting until the perfect moment. With Burgundy representing half of our portfolio, we have no shortage of these back-of-the-cellar bottles.

Sparkling Rosé for Saint-Valentin.

Americans don’t drink enough sparkling wine. By restricting its use to special occasions, we ignore its many other capabilities: a classy way to welcome guests, a gentle start to a meal, or a versatile pairing with an enormous range of foods. The French are more apt to treat sparkling wine as just that — a wine that sparkles, to be enjoyed like any other.

A Local Suggestion in Bordeaux.

“How do you find your winemakers?” is probably the most common question we’re asked. The best answer is that we trust the locals whenever we can. Sometimes this means recommendations from vignerons we already work with; sometimes it is customers with vineyard connections. But our favorite source is often the local wine list.

New Rugged Red Burgundy. $25

Burgundy is best known for its wines of refinement and elegance. The delicate, often ethereal Pinot Noirs from towns like Vosne-Romanée and Chambolle-Musigny are unlike any others in the world, and rightly receive the majority of Burgundy’s press. But there’s a whole other world of red Burgundy to the South of the Côte d’Or.

Silky, Elegant Red Burgundy. $34

On most maps, Santenay is the last town in Burgundy’s famous Côte d’Or. Forever second fiddle to its famous neighbor Chassagne-Montrachet to the north, Santenay nonetheless produces excellent wines. With neither the staying power nor the tannic structure of wines from Chassagne, they are often far easier to enjoy young.

A Secret Source for White Burgundy.

St-Aubin is the insider’s white Burgundy. While writers spill most of the ink on the great wines from Puligny-Montrachet and Chassagne-Montrachet, savvy drinkers know of the treasure that lies three minutes to the west, in a valley between the two famous towns. The wines from the tiny, hidden village of St-Aubin may lack the aging power and depth of Chassagnes and Pulignys, but they remain what Rajat Parr calls “some of the best-value Chardonnay in the world.”

Mixed Case: Roger Belland Sampler

Like many in Burgundy, the Domaine Roger Belland isn’t flashy. There’s just a small sign next to the door on the street, and you have to enter the cellar before seeing any of their many winemaking awards. But the Bellands have made wine since 1839, and Master of Wine Clive Coates calls them “among the best sources in Santenay.”