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There’s a wine tasting in the offing that courts the exotic, which makes it a bit mysterious, giving it Raymond Chandler intrigue.

Before I tell you the back story, pen this date in your calendar – May 11th – for what is being billed as “The Seven Percent Solution Tasting.”

Curious as to The Seven Percent? It’s a claim – pure and simple — made by a group of producers who say 93 percent of California’s vineyard acreage is planted to eight major grape varieties, leaving only seven percent for all the others. As for these left-of-center varietals. they include grenache blanc, trousseau, gamay, refosco, tempranillo, verdelho, touriga nacional, and semillon

The 17 producers who will be pouring these lesser-known varietals are inventors, leading-edge thinkers who are compelled to experiment. Some of my favorites include Leo Steen, Bedrock Wine Co., Unti and Wind Gap. Others I want to explore include Idlewild Wines, Jolie-Laide, Massican, Scholium Project, and Two Shepherds.

The tasting will be from 3 to 7 p.m. at Bergamot Alley Bar & Wine Merchant in Healdsburg and tickets are $40 a pop. For more information, visit www. bergamot alley.com.

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