Treble Journey: New and Unusual Grapes, #242 – #244
And once again this will be rather a progress report on the road to the Treble status at Wine Century Club. Three new grapes, three unusual names (well, yeah, it would be surprising to see grape #242 being called Merlot).
Domaine Du Ridge Champs de Florence 2008, Quebec, Canada
As I routinely check the grapes for the wines I drink, I was pleasantly surprised to find that this Rose wine was made out of the grape called Seyval Noir. I know Seyval Blanc, which is a popular grape choice for the white wines in the eastern part of US, but Seyval Noir is a new one. The wine, Champs de Florence from Domaine du Ridge is a nice rose wine, with aromas of fresh strawberries ( quite typical for rose), medium body and good refreshing acidity.
Every time I’m lucky enough to come across the wine from Switzerland, I regret that it is almost impossible to find them in US – both traditional ( Pinot Noir, Gamay, Chardonnay) and indigenous grapes (Gamaret, Diolinoir, Humagne…) produce very good results there – but the wines are literally unknown outside of Switzerland. This particular white wine is made out of the grape called Heida. I would like to note that every “unknown” grape forces me to do quite a bit of research (and it deserves a separate post) – and based on information available on internet, Heida is a close relative of another grape coming from Jura in France and called Savagnin – however, the information is not strong enough to declare Heida and Savagnin to be identical, so please let me consider Heida a grape on its own for now.
Going back to wine, it has very pleasant nose with aromas of white peaches and hints of white flowers, medium body and nice rounding acidity, all in all making it great wine for summer day. Interesting to note that wine didn’t have enough aromatics to stand up against Asian food, but should work better with mild cheeses ( well, I wish I had another bottle to try it with ).
#244, Raboso Piave
This wine comes from Vigna Dogarina winery in Veneto region in northern Italy. Veneto is well known for its traditional Valpolicella, Amarone and Bardolino wines, though grapes like Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot also produce very good results. Ros de Plana is a very good example of that – this blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Raboso Piave is unmistakably Italian wine – dense and earthy on the palate, somewhat of a middle ground between Barolo and Brunello, two of very famous and powerful Italian wines, it opens into a very nice and balanced wine, with spicy oak, walnuts and sour cherries and great midpalate density. This balanced wine will also continue to age very nicely. Just to comment on what seems to be a wine-geek talk, “midpalate density” (essentially the feeling of the liquid weight in your mouth) is a term I recently learned in the article by one of my favorite wine writers, Matt Kramer, regular contributor to the Wine Spectator magazine. Matt Kramer uses midpalate density as a main factor in determining age-worthiness of the wine. One more comment on a comment – to open an article from the link above you might need a subscription to the Wine Spectator online (if you like wine – this is one of the best investments you can make). Anyway, talking about Ros de Plana – here is the rating:
I just hope that I didn’t overwhelm my readers with the wine speak and geek – and if I did – please feel free to slap me…
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