This selection is one of those rare instances where the "curator" is as much of a story as the wine. That's the new buzzword now. People with incredible knowledge and experience in the wine business curate wines they find in remote places. Why? Because they are among the few people who can interest others in novel wine finds purely because of who they are.
Doug Margerum is such a curator. I'd need a lot more room to tell you his whole story, but suffice to say that Doug is one of the most influential and respected people in the wine business.
Doug owned a destination restaurant called The Wine Cask, in Santa Barbara, that just about everybody in the wine business knew. The food was incredible, the wine list extraordinary, but more importantly, Doug single-handedly put the Santa Barbara wine industry on the map. He engineered tastings and even pre-sells, which had never been done before. He knew how great this region was and wanted everyone else to know as well.
So, when Doug says "Hey I got this great wine from Duche d'Uzes, France," the first thing people ask is "When can we taste it?" - not "Where is Duche d'Uzes?" For the record, it's about eight miles northeast of Avignon, home to Chateauneuf-du-Pape.
This blend of Viognier, Grenache Blanc and Roussanne is mesmerizing in its charm and presence, with lovely hints of stone fruit, lilac and jasmine. The finish is penetrating, with a long citrus edge.