grown in the Hunter Valley near Sydney is a unique offering as it
needs 10-30 years of bottle age to perform its magic in the bottle.
With typically no oak, the light, simple wine in its youth transforms
into a lusciously nutty, pear, apple and fig treasure chest of flavors.
Difficult to find, but worth searching out.
is a California original in that it's origin is not known for sure.
An all-purpose red wine that is produced in a wide variety of styles.
The typical aspect of the varietal is a berry-like character, similar
to raspberries or strawberries. Generally fruity, somewhat spicy
in nature. Many producers have built their entire reputation on
this grape and rightfully so. While the best come from top vineyards,
many with vines 60 years old and older, even the mass produced wines
at bargain prices generally offer more flavor than any other grape
in the price rang
is the principle grape in Chateauneuf du Pape and succeeds there
like no place else. The best Chateauneuf are densely rich with spice
and cranberry flavors and can live for decades. The warm climate
almost guarantees a good vintage every year with few exceptions.
Cabernet Franc provides the beautifully scented and flavorful wines
of Chinon and Bourgueil with their hints of red apples and cranberry
and one of the greatest Rosés in the world from d'Anjou. Pinot Blanc
and Tokay Pinot Gris produce exceptional wines in Alsace offering
exotic fruit and soil components matched with piquant acidity.
made from the Nebbiolo grape in two small villages in Piedmont named
Barolo and Barbaresco can sit alongside the greatest of the great
wines of the world. Medium in color and body, Nebbiolo packs an
acidic wallop that often takes years to soften, but when it does,
comparisons to the greatest Burgundies or Rhone wines are warranted
for its sweet/tart cherry, earthy and almond qualities. Unfortunately,
it ripens so late that it is constantly threatened by rain or even
hail so the vintage is almost as important as the producer in choosing
a wine. Barbera is becoming the new darling of the wine trade as
many producers are finely taming its Nebbiolo-like acidity and softening
it in French oak. The top choices from Piedmont present a myriad
of exotic spice and fruit flavors as engaging as they are unique.
Sangiovese is the principle grape in Chianti producing a rich, leathery
licorice amalgam with sweet cherry fruit and a long finish. Very
own Grüner Veltliner makes one of its most (if not its most) exciting
and engaging wine. Part Riesling-like, part Pinot Blanc-like yet
still distinctively its own it offers a white peach and green apple
flavor with touches of earth and slate that are very inviting. Prices
range from under $10 to over $40 with each offering value for what's
in the bottle.
makes icewine from the Vidal grape, a French hybrid crossing of
Ugni Blanc (a.k.a. Trebbiano) and Seyval Blanc. The best are incredibly
luscious and offer both sweetness and acidity along with the botrytis
influenced apricot flavors that no German Eiswein can ever attain.
is a cross between Cinsault and Pinot Noir. Many are quite simple
ordinary wines, but a few dedicated producers produce incredibly
luscious and inviting wines that easily stand up to any in the world.
They feature a lightness akin to Pinot Noir but and lasting finish
and spicy and engaging almost Grenache-like fruit. Worth seeking
has been extremely successful here producing rich, blackberry flavored
wines often outshine its home in Cahors, France.
is the principle grape in the wines from Rioja and Ribera del Duero.
With hints of qualities associated with Sangiovese, Grenache and
Zinfandel, this grape excels in blackberry and spicy, leathery components
as well as an ability to age like almost no other red grape.
grown in the Midwest can yield a hefty red wine with flavors reminiscent
of a cross between Syrah and Zinfandel. Seyval Blanc produces very
pleasant white wine offering some of the apple flavors found in
Riesling and the herbal melon flavors found in Chenin Blanc.