Italy, Veneto, White blends, White wines

Maculan Pino and Toi 2008

Maculan Pino&ToiAWinemaker: Fausto Maculan
Grape: 60% Friulano (known as Tocai Friulano), 25% Pinot Bianco and 15% Pinot Grigio
Region: Veneto, Italy

Even though the Tocai variety is mostly known to wine collectors for its world class Hungarian sweet wines, in this case the Maculan family uses Tocai to add rich aroma, flavor profile and complexity into their white wine. No, this is not your regular Pinot Grigio.

Located in Breganze, a village in the hills north of Venice, the vineyards are surrounded by mountains, creating a natural barrier to cold winds. Fausto Maculan knows it is a perfect climate for the cultivation of vineyards. He is Breganze’s greatest wine producer and acknowledged as an exceptional winemaker.

The combination of ancient grapes of this region with popular current varietals let him create line of red and white wines of outstanding quality. In case of Pino & Toi the wine is fermented in stainless steel and ages minimally before bottling to preserve the freshness.

I remember when I first tasted Pino & Toi wine several years back, and it stood out in the crowd of other whites we were tasting that day. Yes, it is acidic wine, but it had the smooth, round, creamy, almost oily sensation when I swallowed it. That’s usually a typical characteristic for a high quality German Rieslings. Very rich in layers of flavors and definitely wine to remember.

Tasting notes:
This wine is pale yellow in color. Intense citrus and fruity aromas. Very generous in fruity flavors with hints of lemon, peach, pear and honey. Round, rich and balanced with crisp acidity into a satisfying finish. Although this wine can age a little (maybe 2-3 more years), I prefer it as fresh as possible. I’ll definitely buy it again.

Dry – Off dry – Medium sweet – Sweet
Light – Medium – Full body
No oak – Aged in oak
Retail price: under $ 14.00

Ideal food pairing:
lovely as an aperitif, pair well with My happy TilapiaSeafood, Shrimp Scampi,  Chinese or Japanese cuisine, and many more

Garganega, Italy, Veneto, White wines

Inama Vin Suave Classico Foscarino 2006


Winemaker: Stefano Inama
Grape: 100% Garganega
Region: Veneto, Italy

The climate in Soave Classico is influenced by the Mediterranean’s warm temperatures but it has less humidity than the coast due to its hilly position. This provides a long growing season, allowing the grapes to ripen slowly to full maturity. Soave Classico’s volcanic soil imparts a floral aroma and a discernible character on the palate.

Although the winery is modern, intervention during winemaking is kept to a minimum. Grapes are picked fully ripe and after a short maceration and gentle pressing the must is left to settle before a temperature-controlled fermentation and spontaneous malolactic fermentation. Foscarino is selected from old vines grown on the top of Monte Foscarino. Wine aged seven months in old barrique and bottled with a minimum of fining and filtration, preserving both aromatic intensity and natural balance.

Tasting notes:
Lovely, fresh wine with intense yellow color. On the nose there is aroma of sweet field flowers such as chamomile, iris and herbs. Large and round on the palate with a spicy notes and a big, nutty finish. Lovely balance with fruit and acidity.

Dry – Off dry – Medium sweet – Sweet
Light – Medium – Full body
No oak – Aged in oak
Retail price: under $ 20.00
Sustainable farmed

Winemakers recommends ideal food pairing:
strong taste fish (fresh tuna, salmon etc.), and/or smoked fish, our seafood party salad will work well too

Corvina, Italy, Red wine, Valpolicella Classico, Veneto

Remo Farina Ripasso 2006


Winemaker: Luigi Andreoli
Grape: 60% Corvina, 25% Rondinella,
5% Molinara and 10% otherr
Region: Valpolicella Classico, Veneto, Italy

The Farina family has roots in agriculture and winemaking tracing back to the beginning of the 16th century. Today they combine the most modern concepts in winemaking technology with ancient, time-tested methods to produce rich, elegant wines.

The winemaker picked the best Corvina, Rondinella and Molinara grapes. After the wine is fermented directly when harvested, The Ripasso method means that after a few months (in the spring) the wine undergo second fermentation on Amarone’s crushed grape skins.

Ripasso is the traditional method in Valpolicella to get richer color, aroma and body of the Corvina based wines and it also prolongs wine’s longevity. Grapes from the original Valpolicella zone are designated Valpolicella Classico. Wine that have a higher level of alcohol and that received an additional year of aging, like Remo Farina did, are designated Superiore.

Tasting notes:
A beautiful deep ruby color with the typical earthy aroma that I love so much on Italian wines. Promises spices and dried cherries and grapes.
As it opens up I tasted a lot of spice, rich flavors of dried fruit and light compliment of oak. Great balance with acidity and long finish. Excellent value for a Ripasso.

Dry – Off dry – Medium sweet – Sweet
Light – Medium – Full body
No oak – Aged in oak
Retail price: under $ 20.00

Pork chops with onions and peppers, grilled meats, Pork chops with wine and capers, aged cheeses (I had Manchego and Goat cheese with it) , Lamb chops with dried cherries