Volume 8: The Calling-it-quits Edition

Illustration by Anna Vu (@goodwinecrapdrawing)
Strekov 1075
Fred #3
Blauer Portugieser, Alibernet, Dunaj
Južnoslovenská, Slovakia

What on the surface looks like a simple wine for quick drinking is actually quite a multi-layered experiment. For this cuvée, Zsolt mixed two vintages and some unusual grape varieties. Half of the wine is made with 2017 grapes of Alibernet and Dunaj which age for 15 months. In February he added Blauer Portugieser from 2018, so you get a very young and fresh wine. It’s a very smooth and quaffable blackberry juice with some proper acidity to make it a straightforward food companion with anything greasy or grilled.

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Insolia, Grecanico
Sicily, Italy

The grapes for this wine grow on limestone with red clay on top which helps with freshness and balance. The grapes spend one weeks on their skins which results in that beautiful orange color. They are then aged for nine months in concrete vats and receive a little bit of sulfur before they are bottled and left for three months before they are released. The result is an exquisite wine with hints of dried apricot and some herbal notes. Orange wines are food wines, but I suggest you have it with lighter dishes like white pasta sauces or risotto.

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Jean Maupertuis
Pink Bulles
Auvergne, France

Although Jean owns a lot of the slightly different Gamay d’Auvergne, he uses the younger Beaujolais Gamay grapes for the bubbles, as they are more productive. They are left to ferment on the skins just for a short amount of time, and then the juice continues for 8 days until it is bottled. Then they spend a few weeks in racks and are turned to slowly move the deposit to the neck of the bottle before the manual disgorgement. Only a couple of bottles are usually allocated, so enjoy it while it lasts. It won’t be very long but will have aromas of peach and strawberry with a good enough edge to keep it interesting. It’s so good you don’t need food with it, but will go well as an aperitif or with sweets.

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