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Hey French – Drink Italian

November 12, 2020 Leave a comment

I mean no disrespect.

The title of this post is only suggesting that you should drink Italian wine. A particular Italian wine. And it doesn’t mean that French people should drink Italian wine – even though they will not regret if they will. Everybody can (should?) drink this Italian wine – Hey French.

The Pasqua brothers started Pasqua Vigneti e Cantine winery almost 100 years ago, in 1925 near the town of Verona in Northern Italy. Now with the family’s third generation at the helm, the winery continues and advances its traditions. I came across Pasqua wines for the first time almost 10 years ago – I found Pasqua Amarone at Trader Joe’s in Boston, and it was as good as Amarone under $20 can be. Then I discovered (also at Trader Joe’s) PassimentoSentimento, a tribute to the most famous Italians from Verona – Romeo & Juliet. At the beginning of this year, 2020, I had the pleasure of tasting Pasqua Famiglia Amarone at the Gambero Rosso event in New York. And then I was offered to try a sample of the latest addition to the Pasqua portfolio – maybe even a winner of the longest wine name contest – Hey French. You Could Have Made This Wine But You Didn’t.

This wine is definitely unique. To begin with, the wine is identified as “multi-vintage”, which is not a typical term in the wine world. The standard term is non-vintage, it is typically applied to Champagne and some other sparkling wines. And of course, a typical Champagne is a blend of multiple still wines from multiple vintages – however, it is rare to find a non-vintage still red or white wine. Hey French is deliberately identified as multi-vintage and it takes its inspiration from Champagne (hence Hey French in the wine’s name). The wine is made out of the grapes coming from the 4 best vintages of the decade – 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017, from one of the best vineyards in the area, Monte Calvarina, and 3 grapes – primarily Garganega (the grape used for the production of Soave Classico), with the addition of Pinot Bianco and Sauvignon Blanc. A total of 18 wines were used to produce Hey French Edizione 1.

How was the wine? In a word, delicious.

Multi-vintage Pasqua Hey French You Could Have Made This Wine But You Didn’t Edizione 1 Veneto Bianco IGP (13.5% ABV, $40, blend of best 4 vintages of last decade)
Intense gold
Vanilla, apples, plums, Chardonnay-like
Fresh, lip-smacking, precise, clean acidity, whitestone fruit, granny smith apples, a hint of nutmeg, a hint of butter, round, plump, herbs, perfectly dry, delicious.
8/8+, superb.

Based on my experience with Pasqua wines so far, the company is accustomed to making bold moves (drinkable Amarone under $20 at Trader Joe’s clearly is a good indicator). This multi-vintage wine should also be categorized as such – $40 still wine without vintage designation with a playful label (designed by the celebrity Cuban-French artist CB Hoyo) might not be an easy sell. Once you try this wine, which is an absolutely solid, world-class wine, you would be happy to drink it again and again, but you know how preconceived notions work with wine…

The bottom line is simple – find this wine and try it. Additionally, offer it to your friends to taste blind, and then watch for the surprise on their faces once you reveal the wine – life’s little pleasures. Cheers!

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