Wine, usually made in countries that do not straddle the equator, countries that don't boast the worlds largest rainforests or the worlds longest and most famous river but that just goes to show that assumptions are best avoided when it comes wines and wine quality.
The March Wine Club meeting had the very great pleasure and enjoyment in being able to be taken on a journey to Brazil to enjoy wines from that vast country. Most of us were unaware of the scope and range of the wines produced in Brazil. Unaware that Brazil produces more wine than New Zealand.
How do we know this? By dint of the fact that we were able to enjoy a very impressive and thoughtful presentation by the commercial director of the leading importer of Brazilian wines to the UK, Nicholas Corfe. His company Go Brazil, have a long experience of importing wines from Brazil. On this night we ere able to enjoy a very impressive selection of that countries production.
Many thanks Nicholas both for a very good and well researched presentation but also for the impressive selection of wines.
What were those wines?
We enjoyed 6 wines, three reds and three whites, two of which were made using the 'method traditionelle'
1. CAVE GEISSE EXTRA BRUT TRADICIONAL 2014 12% Abv.
Trad. Method sparkler, 30 months on lees, 50% Chardonnay-50% Pinot Noir blend. Mid-straw yellow in colour with gold hints. Small persistent bubbles. Very fresh on nose with strong autolytic character – brioche, toast and nutty aromas all showing. Apple and peach prominent on palate, also some lemon or citric notes. Well rounded, highish acidity and dry ( 6gm res. sugar/ltr.).Very long finish, ends with a tiny sherbet spritz. Drink well chilled as an aperitif; makes an impressive party or formal occasion wine.
High quality: awarded 94 points by Decanter magazine ( October 2018 ).
2. SINAIS ITÁLICO RIESLING 2017 13% Abv.
Produced by the Don Guerino winery from grape of Central European origin, also known as ‘Welschriesling’. Ripe tropical fruit notes on nose, some floral hints. Spends 4 months on lees prior to bottling. Palate is light to medium-bodied with restrained pineapple, melon and peach flavours. Dry, but without the minerality and high acidity associated with German Rhein Riesling. Soft stonefruit and pineapple show on a longish finish. Drink chilled as an aperitif or serve as an accompaniment to hors d’oeuvres, seafood and fish.
3. DON GUERINO ‘VINTAGE’ MALBEC 2017 13% Abv.
From same winery as the ‘Sinais’ above, this is a 100% Malbec, aged in both American and French oak for approx. 6 months, then rests another 6 months in bottle prior to release. Vibrant and youthful fruit on nose with strong varietal violet and mulberry notes, also hint of tobacco. Ripe blackcurrant and plum follows on a super smooth palate, which shows lovely caramel flavours and well integrated oak. Medium bodied, dry, with decent acidity; some ageing potential. Highly versatile: serve with roast chicken, medium flavoured cheeses or pasta dishes.
5. PIZZATO FAUSTO TANNAT 2015 13% Abv.
Produced in the Serra Gaúcha region by the Pizzato winery, which is highly regarded for its red wines, this is a 100% varietal Tannat, made to be drunk relatively young. Wine is a deep purple-red, with concentration of dark perfumed fruit on nose. More black berry fruit on palate, while other notes of spice, coffee or leather may be discernible too. Soft, well integrated tannins ( wine is aged for approx. 7 months in 2nd/3rd use French oak ) with good, balanced acidity. Already very approachable and drinking well - but will mature further. Recommended with lamb, cassoulet, stews, charcuterie and curries..
4. DON GUERINO RESERVA TEROLDEGO 2017 13.5% Abv.
Seldom seen grape variety of northeast Italian origin, this is a 100% example from 17 yr. old vines. Aged in French and American oak for approx. 6 months, then a further 6 months in bottle before release. Attractive, very deep inky purple in colour. Concentration of youthful dark fruits on nose, overlaid with lighter raspberry or redcurrant notes. More ripe fruity aromas on medium palate, which shows a moreish black cherry and licorice core, with hints of smokiness and vanilla off well integrated oak. Tannins still in evidence but overall wine is smooth, with fairly high acidity and touch of sour cherry on a long finish. Recommended with roast lamb or pork.
6. SANJO NOBRESE SPARKLING MOSCATO NV 7% Abv.
Originating in Santa Catarina, Brazil’s coldest state this is a sweet sparkler - with 74gm/ltr. of residual sugar - but light and fruity nonetheless, and without a cloying texture. Made using the ‘Asti’ method, the wine is a very pale yellow with lovely orange blossom and citrus aromas. The mousse is gentle and perlage shows plenty of small bubbles. Highish, cleansing acidity means it is not overly sweet on palate, and freshness is accentuated further when wine is served chilled. Try with meringues, fruit salad or dark chocolate puds, or as a simple digestif on its own.
Nicholas has sent me the order forms on line should members wish to order, if you do I suggest you use my address for the delivery point. Drop me an email too confirm. email@example.com
I can hear you saying well the tasting notes are very good but what was the general opinion of the wines and which sparkled?
I would say the reds were all well received, a great depth of flavour with a long finish, None of the massive tannin sometimes experienced with the grape varieties that made up the reds, in fact, while that could not be called soft they could perhaps be called firm and bright.
The first fizz was a surprise, almost effervescent in the mouth but calming to a gentle and dry finish, the last fizz, a sweetie, going well with chocolate or a pudding at home perhaps.
The Riesling, always wine to evoke the best and worst in the taste buds was not universally liked, but a neutral Riesling that would be good with neutral foods, fish for example, or maybe as an aperitif.
Since the meeting Nic has asked me point out that he will be at the Cheltenahm Wine Festival next weekend and also at the Oxford Wine Festival on 6/7 September.
Here are the prices and order form, if you have any problems printing let me know and I will send over.
The date of the next meeting is June 7th. Our speaker will be David lloyd