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We have taken delivery on some interesting imports from Mediterranean countries and on Saturday will be pairing a red and a white from each of Italy, Spain and Greece. Join us for our poor-man’s tour of the Mediterranean as we sample wines of each country that make us wish we were there.
2006 Teruzzi & Puthod Vernaccia, “Rondolino”, Tuscany
The Vernaccia grape yields a wine that is a brilliant straw yellow in color, and the nose is delicately floral and fruity with notes of citrus. In the mouth it is light and crisp with bright lemon/lime flavors. A slight flintiness accompanies notes of green apple. It is harmonious, pleasantly complex in flavor and pleases with a soft mouthfeel. It is best served lightly chilled, and is delicious with all types of seafood, white meats and carpaccio.
2007 Boutari Moschofilero, Mantinía, Greece
Boutari Moschofilero (mo-sko-FEEL-ero) is a premium white wine made from 100% Moschofilero grapes grown in high elevation vineyards in the AOC region of Mantinía in the Peloponnese. For years, Moschofilero has been an important selling white wine in Greece and, until recently, a virtual unknown in the United States. This is a fresh white wine with intense floral (white rose) and fruity (melon and citrus trees) aromas and flavors. It serves well as an aperitif.
2007 Burgans Albariño, Rias Baixas Spain
This wine scored 90 points from Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate: “Burgans is a custom cuvee made for importer Eric Solomon and in terms of bang for the buck, it has no challenger. The 2007 is light gold-colored with a sprightly nose of mineral, spring flowers, and lemon peel. Ripe, balanced, and concentrated, this is an ideal match for flaky fish courses.” Also: look for the flavor of white peaches balancing nicely off of the wet stone character. Excellent with oysters, lightly fried white fish or even roast chicken.
2006 Valcantara Garnacha, Cariñena, Aragón, Spain
The Valcantara is made of Grenache from vineyards of more than 40 years old. Flavors of berries, cherries and leather carry from the nose to the palate. The wine is medium bodied, lush, full, spicy and fruity, with rounded tannins. It is ideal with any roasted or highly flavored meat dish, as well as a variety of tapas.
2005 Pavlou-Kagas “Klima” Xinomavro, Macedonia, Greece
The vineyard yielding this wine is 160 kilometers to the west of Thessaloniki in the region of Macedonia in Greece. The estate is owned by two Greeks, George Pavlou and Vasilios Kagas as well as by an Italian-Canadian Alex Pulcini, who is responsible for distribution in North America. The Xinomavro (ksee-no-mah-vro) vines were selected from an organically-run vineyard, and are between 15 and 75 years old. Xinomavro is a wine lover’s wine, rather than an easy drinking crowd pleaser. With a low color and flavors of earth and sun-dried tomatoes, the grape is often compared with Nebbiolo in its youth, largely due to the high tannin and acidity.
2001 Castello di Monastero Chianti Classico Riserva, Tuscany
The winery is located in the area near Sienna in Tuscany where Sangiovese is “king”. Vinification here is done in the traditional method, with contact on the lees for 14-15 days. The wine is aged for 16 months in French wood barriques, then undergoes considerable bottle age on premises at a controlled temperature. The color is dark with light orange hints and the bouquet: is earthy with hints of cherries slightly spiced. The taste is dry, harmonious and complex with medium tannins.