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About this Episode

Whitney Grant, wine educator and certified sommelier, and Robert Tas visit Seattle’s favorite steak house, The Butcher’s Table. This restaurant has won many awards for both the cuisine and the wine. Whitney identifies a few stellar blends on the menu in addition to value wines and those special bottles. She also explains what the difference is between Old World and New World wines and takes a closer look at the stylistic difference for a particular varietal chardonnay.


Wines reviewed include:

●  2019 Flowers Chardonnay

●  2018 Jean-Luc Colombo “Les Abeilles”

●  2019 Bodega Colomé Estate Malbec

Transcript: The Butcher's Table

The Butcher’s Table

RT: Hello and Welcome to CorkRules!

A podcast where, in each episode, we will review a wine list from your favorite restaurants. I’m your host Robert Tas along with Whitney Grant, wine educator and certified sommelier,

Hello Whitney, it’s great to have you back on with CorkRules.

WG: Hi Robert! Thanks for having me! I’m excited to share these wine selections with you and the CorkRules listeners.


Before we jump in, let’s talk about CorkRules.

We created CorkRules to demystify wine lists because we know from experience that sometimes when we get that list handed to us, well… it can be intimidating and even a little daunting.

Our aim is to help prepare you to navigate that list, find those hidden gems, or value wines or that special bottle that will take your dining experience over the top.

RT: So, sit back and listen as we review your favorite wine list.

RT: Today we are talking about The Butcher’s Table. Nominated for Seattle’s Best Steakhouse by Thrillist. This sleek steakhouse and takeaway butcher counter offers classic preparations, prime wagyu cuts and has a stellar wine list. Whitney I can’t wait to hear what do you think of their wine offerings, where should we start with this list?

WG: How about we start with a few wines by the glass?   

RT: Take it away, Whitney

WG: Let’s start with the Tablas Creek Vineyards white blend from Paso Robles in California. This is a blend of 5 Rhone varietals. Grenache blanc, roussanne, viognier, marsanne, and clairette blanche. Crisp acids, with a rich mouthfeel, floral and tropical aromatics, structure, spice, freshness and minerality. Don’t sleep on Paso! This hidden gem in California has amazing wineries producing excellent wines at better prices than wines in Napa or Sonoma.

WG: Next I would recommend the 2019 Flowers Chardonnay from the Sonoma Coast in California. This with has bright citrus notes, white flowers, white peach and hints of flint. Nice acidity balanced with flavor of orchard fruits, with a long bright finish. Flowers vineyard pioneered pinot noir and chardonnay. Focused on farming responsibly, harvesting by hand and using 100% native fermentation making wine with minimal intervention. Flowers is an iconic Sonoma producer.

 RT: What wine by the glass would you recommend for red wine drinkers?

WG: The Jean-Luc Colombo “Les Abeilles” Red Blend is a 2018 Côte-du-Rhône blend. Cotes-du-Rhone accounts for more than half of the production of appellation wines in the Southern Rhone Valley of France. This blend is 60% grenache, 30% syrah, 10% mourvedre. Expect intense purple color with a nose of violets, plum, and casis. Silky dark red fruit with a hint of spice on the palate. Great food friendly wine!


Finally the Melville Estate 2018 Syrah from the Santa Rita Hills in California. This is a plum colored wine with notes of fig, eucalyptus and pepper corns. Dark lingering fruit, black olive, delicate tannins with fresh acidity and a powerful finish. Melville estates was established in 1996  in the heart of the Santa Rita Hills in California.

RT: The wine list at Butcher’s Table is organized by Old World and New World. Could you tell us about that differentiation?

WG: Old World wines are wines made in the traditional wine-growing regions of Europe whereas New World is basically everywhere else.

There are also some stylistic differences between the old world vs. the new world. Old world wines are typically lighter bodied, with lower alcohol, higher acidity, less fruit and more minerality. New world tends to have fuller-bodied wines with higher alcohol, lower acidity, and more fruit flavors.

We can take a closer look at the stylistic difference for a particular varietal chardonnay.

RT: Let’s do it!

WG: Chardonnay is grown in the Burgundy region of France in the old world, let’s take a look at both Chablis and Puligny Montrachet.

Chablis is a village appellation within Burgundy. These wines typically have high mouthwatering acidity with flavors of green apple, citrus, lemon and wet stone. These wines are almost always unoaked.

Puligny Montrachet is a village within Burgundy located further south than Chablis. These wines tend to have flavors of lemon, golden apple, pear, quince, and yellow plum. These wines will typically be made in French oak giving flavors of cinnamon, almond, and bread from lees contact.

There is a range of styles for New World Chardonnay from cool climate unoaked Willamette Valley Chardonnays or Warmer oaked California Chardonnay. Looking at this list there is one I would definitely recommend giving a try. The 2018 Chateau Montelenda. Expect cinnamon, ripe peach, aromas of melon, fig and pear. Subtle notes of honeysuckle, vanilla and clove with a bright finish, and full texture. Chateau Montelena is one of the most important and significant wineries that put Napa Valley on the map internationally when their 1973 Chardonnay won the Judgement of Paris. 

RT: So Whitney, is there anything you would recommend that would really impress a guest?

WG: The Vega Sicilia “Unico” 1962 Ribera del Duero. Coming from a world-renowned iconic producer. The Vega Sicilia vineyard offers the best of the best from vineyard aspect, to soil, to the wood chosen at different stages of the 10-year barrel aging process. These wines are known for consistently having elegance, style, and strength and are in a category of some of the best of the best classic wines of not just Spain but the world.

Now a wine this old is not something you could find at your average wine store, if you want to get your hands on a 1962 you are going to have to look into specialized auctions, so if you are looking to impress a guest, this wine will certainly do so!

RT: Wow! Enjoying that wine would be quite the experience. While we all wish we could crack open a bottle like that not everyone has the budget for a 4 figure wine, is there anything on the list that you would recommend that won’t break the bank?

WG: Yes! There are a lot more affordable options on the menu. I love Argentinian wine and the  Bodega Colomé Estate 2019 Malbec is a great choice. Malbec is Argentina’s flagship variety these wines are typically deep colored and full bodied, and generally you can get them at reasonable prices.  This wine comes from Salta region close to the border of Bolivia, with some of the highest vineyards of the world with some over 3,000 meters in elevation. This climate produces wine with great purity and concentration.

This wine has that beautiful bright & intense signature malbec color. With aromas of blackberries, red fruit, and exotic floral notes. It's full and lush with spiced oak notes and hints of pepper. Fresh acidity balances the big bold tannins, it's wonderful, it's complex, and the price is right!

RT: Whitney, thank you so much for all your great suggestions and helping us navigate The Butcher's Table wine list. I can’t wait to go try them myself.

WG: Thanks for having me, Robert, I always enjoy chatting with you about great wines at great restaurants!

RT:To our audience, thank you all for joining us here on CorkRules.

If you would like us to review one of your favorite restaurants, please send us an email to: Info@CorkRules.com or visit our web website where we have a request form available and we will do our best to get it in the queue as quickly as possible.

We are looking forward to being with you on another CorkRules episode soon. In the meantime, please check out our website for other episodes of your favorite restaurant wine lists.

And finally, drink what you love and please make sure you drink responsibly.

Thank you.




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