Join us for another virtual Wine Wednesday event. Across 4 Wednesday evenings we will visit four of the key wine-producing countries in the “New World” and taste one Bordeaux-inspired wine alongside another classic wine from the same county.
Wednesday 17th May
We start our tour of thew New World in Chile.
Our first wine is an oak-aged Carignan. This variety, once ubiquitous in the South of France, has found a new home in Chile, where it produces vibrant and elegant wines with black fruits and a long finish. Intense deep violet colour, on nose is fresh and aromatic with notes of black and red fruit such as blueberries, wild blackberry and violet flowers. Its origin and acidity without equal, make this an elegant wine, with a medium body, round tannins and a long and persistent finish.
Cabernet Sauvignon is the most planted variety in Chile and the Maipo Valley is the area most associated with premium examples. This describes our second wine - made from pre-phylloxera vines. With an intense ruby red colour, its bouquet is clear and fruity, with a perfect balance between fruit and French oak, where prunes, blackberries and spicy notes outstand. To the palate it is pleasant and with great presence of ripe red and black fruits; it presents medium acidity, rounded tannins and a long finish.
Wednesday 31st May
For our second week we travel “down under” to Australia, specifically Western Australia’s premium area of Margaret River.
Our first wine is an outstanding Chardonnay from Moss Wood, hand-picked, gently pressed and fermented and matured in French oak. Fruit aromas are ripe peach, combined with a zesty note similar to cumquat marmalade. These combine with lots of roast almonds and cashews, shortbread biscuits, malt and toasty oak for added complexity. The palate is lively, with fresh acidity giving lift to peaches, limes, grapefruit and caramel; there is full body and firm tannin underneath, so the wine displays good length and there is just a touch of malt and toasty oak on the finish.
Our second wine is also from Moss Wood, their well-known “Amy’s Wood” Bordeaux blend; Cabernet Sauvignon 76%, Merlot 8%, Malbec 8% and Petit Verdot 8% in oak for 18 months. There is an array of aromas expected from this blend, with all varieties making their presence felt. Cabernet Sauvignon dominates, so its blueberries and violets are clear, while Petit Verdot brings its dark berry and jubes, Merlot supporting with black currant and Malbec providing red fruit, almost watermelon-like and some white pepper spice. The structure is firm but balanced, with acidity that is lifted, ensuring the fruit flavours are lively, full body gives good density and mouthfeel - the tannins provide an astringency that doesn’t disrupt, being smooth with no furry or bitter edges.
Wednesday 7th June
For week three we return to one of my favourite wine-producing countries – South Africa.
Elgin is known for its premium Chardonnay’s and our wine from top producer Paul Cluver shows why. On the nose this wine shows great citrus aspects and winter melon notes with some light toasted brioche in the back ground. Tangerine fruit and citrus blossom fragrances are apparent, with hints of vanilla pod and almond flakes. These characteristics follow through onto the palate. The fine, fresh acidity is natural, and adds poise and focus to the wine.
Our second wine is another classic Bordeaux blend - 36% Merlot, 43% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Malbec and 14% Petit Verdot. Aged in oak barriques (35% new French; 65% second- and third-fill) for 20 months. The wine expresses cassis, blackcurrant and dark fruits complemented with cigar tobacco and sour cherry notes. As the wine ages, and its fine-grained tannins soften, a softer, more savoury palate develops revealing wonderful drinkability and tertiary complexity.
Wednesday 14th June
We finish with a visit to the largest wine-producing country outside Europe – the USA.
Although California is by far the largest wine-producing state in the USA, Washington State also makes some fine wines, especially from Bordeaux varieties. Our wine is a premium 100% Cabernet Sauvignon. Robust and alluring, this gorgeous expression of Red Mountain Cabernet offers a medley of blue plum, black cherry and red berry aromas, along with notes of black liquorice, cardamom, clove and sandalwood. On the palate, a creamy entry and ripe, fine-grained tannins build to a richly polished mid-palate, where luxurious layers of fruit mingle with hints of hazelnut, nutmeg, and baking spices.
Our final wine is rather special. Made in California from Black Muscat, it is a lusciously sweet dessert wine with aroma of roses, – cherry, strawberry – balanced with fruit acidity to finish clean.
"An amazing sweet and rich wine, this has a floral aroma and great concentration. It offers layers of flavour like dried fruit, honey and boysenberry syrup, with food acidity for balance. This makes a fabulous dessert by itself and is sweet enough to conquer almost any other confection." Wine Enthusiast Magazine
As usual, you can enjoy these wines from the comfort of your home as the events are hosted via Zoom.
We have partnered with Frazier’s wine merchants to supply the wines, available via this link for the discounted price of £160.
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