“A bottle of wine contains more philosophy than all the books in the world.” –– Louis Pasteur
With this quote in mind, here are five bottlings that will stir deep thinking. The geographic range, which includes South Africa and Argentina, will pique wine lovers’ global interest. But they’ll also be enchanted by the craft itself behind each of these wines.
Uncork these wines when you have time to share with smart company, because they will, no doubt, inspire a long-winded conversation.
Bonny Doon Vineyard, 2016 Beeswax, Arroyo Secco Picpoul. 12.7%, $18. This is a gorgeous and authentic take on a French varietal that’s hot in the south of France right now. Floral aromas with flavors of peach and mineral on the palate. There’s a nice salty note in the mix that makes it interesting. Knockout.
Warwick Estate, 2014 Old Bush Vines, Stellenbosch, South Africa, 13.5%, $20. A snappy red with bright acid and tangy flavors. Notes of currant, raspberry and cedar. Nice and dry. Striking.
Garnet Vineyards, 2014 Stanly Ranch Vineyard, Carneros Pinot Noir, 14.4%, $30. This is a pretty pinot — tangy cherry and strawberry fruit — with a high-toned note of rhubarb. Great minerality and a kick of spice. Impressive.
Alamos, 2015 Mendoza, Argentina Malbec, 13.5%, $9. This malbec has a great backbone of acid and pretty red fruit with notes of cherry and black cherry, coupled with a kick of peppery spice. A steal for the price.
Monte Volpe, 2013 Mendocino County Sangiovese, 14.5%, $19. A bright and lively sangiovese with juicy notes of cherry, a hint of cranberry and earth. This tangy wine, with crisp acidity, is well crafted.
Beneficial insects and the pests they eat
Assassin Bug — Flies, caterpillars, blister beetles
Bigeyed Bug — Leafhoppers, spider mites
Braconid Wasp — Codling Moth, Imported Cabbage Worm, Tomato Hornworm, Cabbage Looper, Aphid
Centipedes — Soil borne mites, larvae of many insects
Damsel Bug — Aphid, Leafhopper, Thrips
Dragonfly — Each dragonfly can eat 300 mosquitoes a day
Ground Beetles — Slugs, snails, Cabbage Root Maggot, many other pests with a soil stage in their development
Hoverfly — Aphid
Ichneumon Wasp — Caterpillars, Imported Cabbage Worm
Lacewing (and related Western North American native Snakeflies) — Corn Earworm, Aphids, many other pests
Ladybug — Aphid, Spider Mite, scale, mealybugs, other soft-bodied pests
Minute Pirate Bug — Thrips, Spider Mite, Leafhopper nymphs, small caterpillars
Solider Beetle — Spotted Cucumber Beetle, Corn Rootworm, Aphid, caterpillars
Tachinid Fly — Caterpillars, Cabbage Looper, Squash Bug, Stink Bug, Tomato Hornworm
Yellow jackets are considered beneficials, too. You may not want them around when you’re eating outside in July, but they are general pest predators (although they prefer grilled lamb).
— Jeff Cox