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Greetings from the Wine Cellar:

Last summer told Newsletter readers about the RESTAURANTS Act of 2020, a bill that had just been introduced into the U.S. Congress. Standing for Real Economic Support That Acknowledges Unique Restaurant Assistance Needed To Survive, the bill’s purpose was to create a $120 billion grant program to provide structured relief to the restaurant industry through December 31, 2020. Grants would only go to businesses that were not publicly traded, and with 20 or less locations. It’s no secret that independent restaurants/bars here in Yuma, primarily small businesses, have been hammered financially by the COVID-19 pandemic over the past year, and that’s why I asked Newsletter readers to contact their Representatives and Senators and urge them to get behind the bill.

I’m asked on occasion what ever happened with the bill, so here’s your update: The RESTAURANTS Act of 2020 did pass the U.S. House last year, but was never brought up for a vote in the Senate. However, a new bill entitled The RESTAURANTS Act of 2021 was just re-introduced into the House and Senate two weeks ago. It’s basically identical to last year’s bill, except eligible businesses would now be able to apply for grants to cover eligible expenses retroactively back to February 15, 2020, and ending eight months after the bill is passed. Recipients would be able to use funds from the grants for payroll, benefits, mortgage, rent, utilities, building maintenance, construction of outdoor facilities, PPE supplies, food, operating expenses, paid sick leave, debt obligations to suppliers and other essential expenses.

I think this kind of financial assistance is still urgently needed, and if you agree please use the link below provided by the Arizona Small Restaurant coalition to contact your Senators and Representatives and ask them to support the RESTAURANTS Act of 2021:

And now, let’s get back to wines!


Bollicini Prosecco Brut (Veneto, Italy) $14.99

Unique to the Veneto region of northern Italy, Prosecco is cherished for its expressiveness. Bollicini’s Brut Prosecco is a vibrantly fresh, zesty bubbly, with rich aromas and ripe fruit flavors of apples, peaches and honeysuckle. The delicious fruit is highlighted by brisk acidity.

Dr. H. Thanisch 2012 Estate Riesling (Mosel Valley, Germany) $17.99

This Estate Riesling from one of the Mosel Valley’s finest producers is just like biting into a juicy, crunchy apple, with a dash of citrus plus a hint of minerally slate thrown in. A superb partner with lighter cuisines, and a wonderful apéritif wine all by itself.

Bodegas Iranzo 2019 Spartico (Utiel-Requena, Spain) $12.99

Spartico is an equal mix of hand-harvested Tempranillo and Cabernet Sauvignon from certified organic vineyards. The wine truly captures the pure expression of the grapes, without the use of any additives, including sulfites, and is completely un-oaked. It’s fruit-filled and juicy, with a smooth, soft mouthfeel but still plenty of tannic grip.

Gérard Bertrand 2017 Tautavel (Côtes du Roussillon, France) $17.99

Gerard Bertrand’s Tautavel Grand Terroir is a blend of 40% Grenache and 40% Syrah, with the balance Carignan. Ripe black fruits, chocolate, licorice and smoky herbs mingle on a ripe, concentrated and round palate that blends Old World rusticity with a New World fruit-forwardness.

Daou Vineyards 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon (Paso Robles) $24.99

Ripe blackberry and black currant aromas emerge on the nose. A seamless texture of vanilla bean and holiday spices mixed with rich black fruit and cedar accents are all evidence of the wine’s superb balance. Firm tannins are well softened with bright acidity, with a hint of pepper on the finish.


J. Wilkes 2016 Zinfandel (Paso Robles) $27.99

J. Wilkes’ Paso Robles Zinfandel delivers all the varietal’s typical raspberry and black cherry fruit, earthy and spicy/peppery tones, and a character that begs for meals cooked outside on the grill. It’s a fresh and delicious example of true California classic.

Round Pond 2019 Sauvignon Blanc (Rutherford, Napa Valley) $18.99

This zippy Sauvignon Blanc practically jumps out of the glass with its aromas of white lilies, spring rain, lychee fruit and grapefruit pith, all continuing to develop as the wine opens with air. In the mouth, a superbly juicy, fruit-laden richness is framed by mouthwatering acidity.

Leeuwin Estate 2017 Siblings Shiraz (Margaret River, Australia) $22.99

Bright flavors of black currant, dark cherry and boysenberry are classic Shiraz, along with accompanying accents of cardamom, anise and cedar. The polished palate has balanced acidity and firm, drying tannins. Subtle notes of chocolate, freshly roasted coffee and pepper chime in on the finish.

Mother Road Brewing Limited Visibility Hazy IPA (Flagstaff) $4.99

Whoa there! Better take it slow when there’s Limited Visibility on the road, or in your glass. This Hazy is straw colored, and pops with hop-derived scents and flavors of citrus, tropical fruit and pine. Enjoy some when you complete your travels…


Mike Shelhamer
Old Town Wine Cellar
265 S. Main Street, Suite E
Yuma, Arizona 85364

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