I’ll bet at some point in your life a French wine stole your heart. It seems to often steel hearts worldwide including mine. In fact, I do love French wine.
Not to say I’m less fond of wines from other countries. Reds, whites, and bubbles from all over the world lasso me. But this month, a month of love and valentines, the French #Winophiles take you to France.
France is a country associated with l’amour. Love of wine and food, and so much more. This month the French Winophiles explore wines with a name or concept reminiscent of love. And appropriately February focuses on these things so come see what we have in store!
Argentina is Malbec country. Head to Mendoza and the Uco Valley where it thrives in a variety of soils and temperatures. This is where Doña Paula is located, and where viticulturist Martin Kaiser studies terroir.
Two appellations lie within the Languedoc-Roussillon: the Corbiéres and Minervois AOPs (Appellation d’Origine Protégée). Both are focused on red wines made from Syrah, Grenache, Mourvèdre, Carignan, Cinsault, and Lladoner Pelut in differing proportions. They deliver a small amount of noteworthy whites made primarily from Grenache Blanc, Bourboulenc, Marsanne, Roussanne, Viognier, Vermentino (Rolle), and Maccabeu (Viura). Several other grapes grow there too. Read on to learn about defining characteristics of these areas.
I’m thrilled to be a finalist in the Millesima wine blog awards! Established to highlight the wine blogging community in Europe and the US, the three award categories are Wine Reporter, Food and Wine Pairing, and Wine Travel. Two people from the US and Europe are picked in each category as finalists for the next round.
Sauternes is a sweet wine appellation south of Bordeaux that includes five small villages. One of them, Barsac, is a sister AOP and home to Château Doisy-Daëne and many other producers. Fantastic wines are produced with modest prices. An area to check out if you’re new to Sauternes style wines.
Vin Santo, the classic Italian dessert wine made in the appassimento method is a beautiful amber color. Inviting aromas of deep caramel- similar to a sweet Madeira- and also hazelnuts and dried stone fruits. It’s great on it’s own but we especially like it with cantucci, a type of Italian biscotti. Dunking is acceptable!
Pairing sweet and savory flavors definitely works, it certainly did here- a tart with figs, pears and caramelized leek yum. My choice was Beaujolais, anything other than a Beaujolais Nouveau, the wine so many are familiar with this time of year. Depending on how you garnish this vegetarian tart, it pairs with many types of wine. Figs not in season? No worries, skip them or use another fruit.
There’s more to Beaujolais than Nouveau. In fact, from Beaujolais AOC to the Crus, you’ll find red, rosé, whites and sparklers for any occasion whether daily drinking or a special event. The best part- the wines of Beaujolais are affordable.
The deep colored Tannat grape is thriving in Uruguay. With naturally high acid and a slant towards firm tannins, it’s fruity (cherry, plum and brambly berries) with sometime notes of spices, earth and floral. The signature grape of Uruguay, it was brought to the country in the 19th century by the Basque born immigrant Pascual Harriague and often called the “Harriague grape”.