4 interesting wine I tasted recently

IMG_6942People may think I only drink Spanish wine. Of course not! In the world of wine, limit to drink only region or country is a sin. I do know some friends only drink Bourgogne, some only drink famous brands in Bordeaux because they only accept the wine they think is perfect but not appreciate the wine imperfect. What a waste! If every bottle is the same, it is too dull. Below are four wine I current tasted. They also have their personality.

  1. Pierre Cotton Côte de Brouilly 2017 (most left) – I can be sure to you that the label is the reason I picked this wine from the shelf. I didn’t know the winemaker, but I can feel he/she is not from the old school. Côte de Brouilly is the cru application in Beaujolais, and this region is a playground of new generation vigneron.
  2. 2015 Vini Viti Vinci Bourgogne Epineuil ‘Vals Noirs’, Burgundy, France by Nicolas Vauthier – All the wine label of Vini Viti Vinci are a bit erotic that really pop up. Bourgogne Epineuil is a sub-region located far north of Burgandy. Because it is so cold even Pinot Noir is difficult to ripe. The wine has sharp acidity like a fresh pick unripe cherry. This remains me once I was at my friend house in Bourgonge, she wanted to make a wild strawberry pie for dessert. She asked me to go to the wild field next to the house to pick some strawberry. I found and tasted one, wow, so sour, but I can taste the freshness and little sweetness after. This is the wine to be drunk on a summer night.
  3. Barberani Orvieto Superiore Luigi e Giovanna 2014 – I saw this wine at the bottom of the wine shelves of Italian wine section. But the graphic with the wine region and the grapes variety of this wine attracting me to pay. Why? I never try this region and grapes varieties. Orvieto is the wine region in Umbria. Grapes varieties are 80% Grechetto, 20% Trebbiano Giallo. This is a fruity white wine with a hint of tropical fruit and sweetness on the nose. I found it balance on sweet and sour like a just-ripe yellow plum. It is a perfect wine for any starters.
  4. Jean-Rene Germanier Balavaud CAYAS Syrah du Valais 2014 – I bought this wine is because I tasted the white wine from the same producer in a cheese-paring tasting event. This wine is from Switzerland. I know by heart that this is cold-climate Syrah – a light body wine. I always find cold climate Syrah has more fruity, freshness rather than lather and gamey from the hot-climate. I feel balanced on the fruit and acidity when tasted, invited to drink more. Harvest very late till November because it took time for the grapes to ripen. I really like it.

If you have a chance to find this in a local wine shop, try it! You will understand the wine only when you finish a bottle 🙂 Cheers!

 

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Natural, biodynamic, and organic wine

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The term “Natural Wine” is so popular among the wine lover circles nowadays, including me. However, “Natural Wine” has not yet well defined, and this term becomes a marketing keyword rather than a certification.

We know wine is natural anyway. The process of fermentation turns the sugar in grape juice into an alcohol and carbon dioxide. After this process, you can call the remaining liquid to wine. It’s natural. On the other hands, if the scientist combines alcohol, water, color, and flavor to make a beverage. They cannot call it wine, even it tastes like wine.

If all wine is natural, what is mean “Natural Wine”? I quote following definition from Wikipedia: “Natural wine is wine made with minimal chemical and technological intervention, both in growing grapes and making them into wine.” OK. However, what this means? Is Natural Wine taste better? What benefit to the wine lover? I have tasted some claimed as  Natural Wine before, to be honest, some wines are not present on both aroma and palate. Actually, the winemaker needs even more effort, skill, and bold to produce a good Natural Wine.

I do not intend to explain too much on natural wine as there are many good books on the shelf from the authors with this expertise. However, I do want to share my personal view on my selection of wine.

Organic/Biodynamic Winery

The vineyard is playing a vital role in winemaking. Organic certified will be a good start. However, some winery is following organic farming parties but has yet certified. So, do ask more question on the use of Herbicide, insecticide, and chemical fertilizers. If you have the chance to visit the vineyard, take a look at the soil. If you see insets, grass and wildflower grow next to the vine, you know this winery is on the right track.

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It will be more excellent if they show you to harvest fruits and vegetables a few steps away from the vineyard. Diversity is a keyword! Of course, if the winery is certified biodynamic even better.

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Wild Yeast

If the winemaker told you that they don’t add yeast to start fermentation just the wild yeast on the skin of the grapes. I am sure the vineyard is in good shape, and they are not using herbicide kind of chemical product as those products will kill the wild yeast. Study shows wild yeast is the crucial factor of showing the ‘Terrior‘ in the wine.

Use of Sulfurous acid (H2SO3)

You usually find the sentence “Contain Sulphur” on the back label.  In the conventional winemaking process, sulfurous acid will add to protect the wine from oxidation and microbes attack. Some research shows a high concentration of sulfur in the wine will cause a headache. In both organic and biodynamic practices, use of sulfurous acid is allowed but in very constraint amount. A lot of ambition winemakers work hard to avoid adding any sulfurous acid in the wine. I still find it difficult to get the sulfur concentration on the wine label, even the winery website. But the wine does not contain sulfur usually will be mentioned 🙂 Remember “Natural wine ≠ no sulfur” do more research before you buy.

I choose the wine I drink or I import mainly according to the above point. Sometimes I encounter even not certified but after the winemakers explain to me what they treat the vine as well as in the cellar naturally, I have more confidence on the wine.

This are the books I am reading:

1. What’s So Special About Biodynamic Wine? Thirty-five Questions and Answers for Wine Lovers by Antoine Lepetit de la Bigne

2. Natural Wine – An introduction to organic and biodynamic wine made naturally by Isabelle Legeron MW

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Check our store for Organic wine from Spain here!