Lovely wines from the Veneto pair perfectly with seafood

June 10, 2013

Lots to cover this week . Summer is fast approaching and fortunately, a bunch of favorably priced summer sippers were made available to me. Let’s jump in with two nice Soaves. These lovely wines from the Veneto in Italy  are  perfect summer wines and a compliment for fresh fish and crab. Cantina di Soave Re Midas Soave 2012 was touted by WE and Wine and Spirit magazines as best buy and  extreme value, high praise rightfully employed. Priced under $10, it won silver at the International Wine Challeng. Midas is very pale straw colored and shows white fruit with a mineral dry finish where I found tropical fruit and hints of pear.  Cantina also produces a Soave Classico priced around $16, named Rocca Sveva Soave Classico 2012.  Aromas of tart apples with sandalwood and soap. Bright acidity. Of the two, Midas is a better buy. Both are above average.

Upscale in price and quality is Livio Felluga Colli Orientalli del Fruili Friulano 2011. WS 88 and WE 90. Green tinged, canary yellow with aromas of apricot, hazelnut,  orange peel and spice. Flower, fruit and mineral notes on the palate. Bitter almond melded with grassy flavors on the finish. This is a typical profile for Friulano. Well balanced fruit acid profile. Finishes dry and cleanly. Buy around $25.

Veramonte Sauvignon Blanc La Gloria 2011 from Chile best since the 91-point 2007 vintage; 90 points WS. I’m happily handing out 92 if you buy it under $13 great QPR.  Light straw color. Medium-bodied with tropical and citrus fruit nose and grapefruit and lime flavors, long, crisp finish shows hints of minerality.

Upscale around $20 Kim Crawford SB 2012 has knocked it out of the box again; 91 points. Very herbaceous opening - please decant to allow the off notes to dissipate and nose to come out. First whiff was a bit rough. But it evolved into citrus sauvignon, lime and tangerine. Finishes with a clean flint note.

Another perennial winner for Viognier lovers is Yalumba Eden Valley Viognier 2011. The last time these folks offered a Viognier under 90 points was 2006 when one rank rater scored them 89.  Aromas of apricot, honeysuckle and orange zest. On the palate more apricots  finishing with citrus. I have enjoyed some six-year-old Viognier from Eden Valley. Bottle aging brought out some honey and toast flavors. Definitely a cellar dweller.

If you enjoy sweet and bubbly try Mionetto Moscato Dolce, favorably priced at $14. Bright straw yellow, aromas of white peach and honey with floral hints Fine bead and proper acidity support peaches and honey flavors.

Little Black Dress Wine, a label Brown Forman, a huge conglomerate, designed to target “millennium women” somewhere around 2005 has opened a product named Divalicious, both red and white. The white won gold at the 2013 Monterey Wine Festival.  Lemon-yellow  with a pronounced bouquet of jasmine, orange blossom and a hint of peaches. Fruit gives appearance of sweet, but there is plenty of acidity to clean up. Made of every white wine grape known to man according to website. Costs around $11.  I’m not much on targeting like that, but my lady pals who send me mail should give it a try and let me know what you think. I found it refreshing.

Last but far from least Aldo Caprai Greccante Dei Calli Martani 2011 is lush. Made from 100 percent Grechetto, Greccante sells well under $20. Most have never tried wine made of 100 percent of this Umbrian varietal and mores the pity. Most of the wine made from Greccheto is used in the blending of Orvieto, probably the best known white wine of Umbria. The 2011 is  pale straw color, with lime peel and tropical fruit aromas,  On the palate citrus and pineapple with crisp acidity cleaning up a long finish. If you can find some I think the 2009 is a bit better but the ‘11 is a clear 89-point winner. Pale straw color with aromas of lime peel and tropical fruit, is a. native grape of Umbria in central Italy. Flavors of citrus and pineapple with crisp acidity that leads to a long finish.

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