Montes Cherub Rose of Syrah 2009 paired with Pesto Pork Pinwheels


Montes Cherub Rose of Syrah 2009 – After several years of experimentation, Aurelio Montes settled on producing a rosé from Syrah, a grape he made famous in Chile with the country’s first-ever Ultra Premium 100% Syrah called Montes’ Folly in 2002.

Montes Cherub Rose of Syrah 2009

Montes Cherub Rose of Syrah 2009

As explained by Aurelio, “I decided to make a rosé from Syrah grown in our Archangel Estate in Marchigüe, in the Colchagua Valley.  Their vineyards are in a coastal area which provides the perfect temperature and conditions for producing a lovely, ripe rosé.  He chose Syrah because this grape has a wonderful purple-red color and gives fresh yet structured wines that can be enjoyed as an apéritif or with food.”

Located only 11 miles from the Pacific Ocean, the cool breezes from the western facing slopes, together with the loamy soils, result in a slow maturation of the grapes which allowed for the perfect balance of citrusy acidity and bursting, ripe fruit.  The Syrah grapes were hand-picked and sorted to ensure that only the finest grapes were used to make Cherub.

The grapes were gently crushed, then transported by gravity to the tanks below in the winery where they then underwent “Vin d’une Nuit”.  This is a process of cold maceration where the must (grape juice before fermentation) is left in contact with the skins overnight (for approximately eight hours) to fully extract color and aromas and infuse the wine with flavor.  Once the juice was racked until totally clear, it underwent alcoholic fermentation using selected yeast at 50º F for 20 days.  To maintain the freshness of the wine, it did not undergo oak aging.

Montes’ Cherub is a seductive, elegant, dry wine, with an intense cherry-pink color.  It is a well-made expression of the grape variety and terroir.  On the nose and the palate, it demonstrates a distinctive Syrah character with spiciness and hints of strawberries, rose and orange peel. With good fruit concentration, it shows richness in texture across the palate that leads to a delightfully long finish.  It has a strong backbone of acidity and a slight amount of tannin that gives the wine a defined structure.

Recipe Pairing; Pesto Pork Pinwheels – Serves:  4; ¼ pound servings each – Pork tenderloin comes packaged two ways-either as a whole piece of pork or split in two pieces.  For this recipe we use one piece of pork tenderloin that weighs one pound.  If your one pound package comes split in two pieces, make two smaller pork rolls and reduce the cooking time to about 25 minutes. 

Ingredients:

1 pound pork tenderloin, all visible fat removed

1 tablespoon commercial pesto or homemade pesto. 

Directions:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Butterfly tenderloin by cutting lengthwise almost in half.

Lay out flat.

Cover meat with plastic wrap.

Use a meat mallet to pound meat to a ¼-inch thickness.

Spread pesto over cut surface of tenderloin.

Roll up tenderloin from on of the short ends and tie with string in several places to secure.

Place tenderloin on a rack in a shallow roasting pan.

Roast, uncovered, 35 to 40 minutes or until the meat thermometer registers 160 degrees F.

Let stand 5 minutes.

Cut into slices.

Nutritional Information:

Calories 145

Protein            23 g

Carbohydrate 0 g

Cholesterol 74 mg

Sodium 78 mg

Total Fat 5 g

  Saturated 2 g

  Polyunsaturated 1 g

  Monounsaturated 2 g

From My Table to Yours,

WineGuyMike

WineGuyMike

WineGuyMike

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WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© with Scott and Paula on The Ranch 07/28/10


Check out the radio show on The Ranch 107.1FM or 97.9FM in The Bitterroot Valley.  How about a live stream feed at www.107theranch.com.

The WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© airs weekly on Wednesday mornings at 8:20AM MDT, come and join in on the fun you never know what we are going to talk about.  Each week we will be giving away gift certificates from our sponsors.  If your question is selected as WineGuyMike’s™ topic of discussion you will win one of the $20.00 gift certificates.  Good luck and send your questions to WineGuyMike™ on his Facebook fan page.

The show is sponsored by Grizzly Liquor, “Missoula’s Best Choice”.  Follow Grizzly Liquor on their Facebook fan page – Grizzly Liquor Missoula

WineguyMike™ Radio Show© has a new additional sponsor we would like to welcome today.  The Lolo Creek Steak House, “rare yet well done”, located in Lolo, MT.  Find them online at http://www.lolocreeksteakhouse.com

Today’s WineGuyMike™ recommendations at Grizzly Liquor; Montes Cherub Rose of Syrah 2008

Today’s winning questions from the WineGuyMike™ fan page are from Joely Hiniker and Tootie Welker.

Q. Joely asks; Mike I am having a party on Aug 6th and it is a cocktail and summertime dessert party.  What kind of Wine should I serve with cool and refreshing desserts?:

A. WineGuyMike suggests:

  • Asti Spumante – An Italian White Sparkling Wine that goes well with fresh fruits and Biscotti
  • Noble Rot or Late Harvest Riesling Wine for fruit tarts and creme brulee.
  • Madeira goes well with milk chocolate, coffee and mocha flavored desserts, or crème caramel
  • Pedro Ximenez Sherry is a perfect selection to go with vanilla ice cream.  Pour the Sherry  over the top of the ice cream for a great dessert
  • Port pairs well with Stilton cheese, dark chocolate desserts, and poached pears
  • Sauternes – A sweet white wine from Bordeaux,  will match up well with crème brulee, fruit tarts, poached fruits, caramel desserts, or a Roquefort cheese
  • Vouvray –  A white wine from The Loire Valley, will go great with tarts , and fresh fruits
  • Muscat Beaumes de Venise – A sweet white wine from the Rhone Valley will be terrific with fruit, fruit sorbets, crème brulee, or a lemon tart

Okay Joely this should give you a lot to choose from paired with general dessert ideas, and what time did you say the party started?

Q. Tootie asks WineGuyMike™; What is the best wine to serve with tofu stir fry’s?  Typically include onions, garlic, ginger, eggplant with a red curry sauce.

A. Alright this is where the WineGuyMike™ Wine & Dine application comes in.  Click on this link and it will take you to The WineGuyMike™ wine and food pairing application.

Link: http://winendine.snapapps.com/Default.aspx

  1. Click Food and Wine pairing
  2. Select Vegetarian
  3. Select Tofu
  4. Select Fried
  5. Select Curry

Your recommended wines are Gewurztraminer (Spicy White Wine from France, Germany, and California) and Sauvignon Blanc for this dish.

WineGuyMike™ recommended wine of the week:

Montes Cherub Rose of Syrah

Montes Cherub Rose of Syrah

Montes Cherub Rose´ of Syrah 2009 – After several years of experimentation, Aurelio Montes settled on producing a rosé from Syrah, a grape he made famous in Chile with the country’s first-ever Ultra Premium 100% Syrah called Montes’ Folly in 2002.

As explained by Aurelio, “I decided to make a rosé from Syrah grown in our Archangel Estate in Marchigüe, in the Colchagua Valley.  Their vineyards are in a coastal area which provides the perfect temperature and conditions for producing a lovely, ripe rosé.  He chose Syrah because this grape has a wonderful purple-red color and gives fresh yet structured wines that can be enjoyed as an apéritif or with food.”

Located only 11 miles from the Pacific Ocean, the cool breezes from the western facing slopes, together with the loamy soils, result in a slow maturation of the grapes which allowed for the perfect balance of citrusy acidity and bursting, ripe fruit.  The Syrah grapes were hand-picked and sorted to ensure that only the finest grapes were used to make Cherub.

The grapes were gently crushed, then transported by gravity to the tanks below in the winery where they then underwent “Vin d’une Nuit”.  This is a process of cold maceration where the must (grape juice before fermentation) is left in contact with the skins overnight (for approximately eight hours) to fully extract color and aromas and infuse the wine with flavor.  Once the juice was racked until totally clear, it underwent alcoholic fermentation using selected yeast at 50º F for 20 days.  To maintain the freshness of the wine, it did not undergo oak aging.

Montes’ Cherub is a seductive, elegant, dry wine, with an intense cherry-pink color.  It is a well-made expression of the grape variety and terroir.  On the nose and the palate, it demonstrates a distinctive Syrah character with spiciness and hints of strawberries, rose and orange peel. With good fruit concentration, it shows richness in texture across the palate that leads to a delightfully long finish.  It has a strong backbone of acidity and a slight amount of tannin that gives the wine a defined structure.

Recipe Pairing; Pesto Pork Pinwheels – Serves:  4; ¼ pound servings each – Pork tenderloin comes packaged two ways-either as a whole piece of pork or split in two pieces.  For this recipe we use one piece of pork tenderloin that weighs one pound.  If your one pound package comes split in two pieces, make two smaller pork rolls and reduce the cooking time to about 25 minutes.

Ingredients:

1 pound pork tenderloin, all visible fat removed

1 tablespoon commercial pesto or homemade pesto.

Directions:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Butterfly tenderloin by cutting lengthwise almost in half.

Lay out flat.

Cover meat with plastic wrap.

Use a meat mallet to pound meat to a ¼-inch thickness.

Spread pesto over cut surface of tenderloin.

Roll up tenderloin from on of the short ends and tie with string in several places to secure.

Place tenderloin on a rack in a shallow roasting pan.

Roast, uncovered, 35 to 40 minutes or until the meat thermometer registers 160 degrees F.

Let stand 5 minutes.

Cut into slices.

Nutritional Information:

Calories 145

Protein            23 g

Carbohydrate 0 g

Cholesterol 74 mg

Sodium 78 mg

Total Fat 5 g

  Saturated 2 g

  Polyunsaturated 1 g

  Monounsaturated 2 g

WineGuyMike’s Wine Lingo

This week’s new wine term is; Astringent

Astringent – This refers to a drying sensation in the mouth that may make you pucker.  It is common in young full bodied red wines such as a Cabernet or a Zinfandel.  This is caused by high tannin content in the wine.  Tannin is a tactile sensation, not a taste.

Crisp – Fresh, Bright, Young, and Slightly Acidic.  Wine Types are Sauvignon Blanc, Vermentino, and Chablis

Grassy – Refers to Herbal Characteristics often associated with Sauvignon Blanc

Oaky – A reference to a nuance in a wine resulting from wooden oak barrels that wines are aged in.  This term is common to Chardonnay’s and Cabernet wines.

Velvety – This term characterizes a wines texture.  This term would be used with a wine that has a rich and supple mouth feel.

Match the words that you think make sense; these words are descriptors for wine:

Bright = Flinty an epiphany in your mouth

Rich = Subtle mellow, smooth, decadent, just easy and fulfilling

Lively = Crisp the wine is refreshing, a zing, literally comes to life in your mouth

Intense = Juicy big, bold, forward just tastes like fruit you could bite into

Velvety = Aromatic sexy, goes down like silk, fills the room with its aroma

From My Table to Yours,

WineGuyMike™

WineGuyMike

WineGuyMike

Good Budget minded Pinot Noir and Pan Seared Salmon with Mint


2009 Castle Rock California Cuvee Pinot Noir – Castle Rock Pinot Noir is produced from grapes grown in a carefully selected group of California vineyards, at which the climate and soil conditions provide excellent growing conditions for this Burgundian varietal. The wine is elegant and medium-bodied, offering aromas of cherry, tea and herbal spice.  On the palate it is smooth with a silky texture and mild tannins, giving flavors of black cherry, plum and spice, and finishing long and harmoniously.  This versatile food wine pairs well with lamb, veal, salmon and light pasta dishes.

2009 Castle Rock California Cuvee Pinot Noir

2009 Castle Rock California Cuvee Pinot Noir

Recipe Pairing; Pan-Grilled Salmon with Mint

Ingredients:

½ cup rice vinegar

2 tablespoons honey

1 teaspoon vegetable oil

2 (6-ounce) salmon fillets (about 1 inch thick)

Cooking spray

1/8 teaspoon salt

¼ cup fresh mint leaves

Directions:

1.  Combine the first 3 ingredients in a shallow dish, and stir with a whisk.  Add fish, turning to coat, and marinate in refrigerator for 10 minutes.  Remove fish from dish, reserving marinade.

2.  Heat a medium nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat.  Add fish, skin sides down; cook 5 minutes.  Turn fish over; pour reserved marinade over fish.  Cook and additional 5 minutes or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork.  Place fish on individual serving plates; spoon pan juices over fish.  Sprinkle with salt; top with mint leaves.  Yield 2 servings.

Calories 357 (39% from fat); Fat 15.3g (sat 3.4g, mono 6.2g, poly 4.5g); Protein 36.2g; Carb 17.5g; Fiber 0g; Chol 87mg; Iron 0.6mg; Sodium 22.7mg; Calc 10mg

WineGuyMike

WineGuyMike

From My Table to Yours,

WineGuyMike

WineGuyMike Radio Show 07/21/10


Check out the radio show on The Ranch 107.1FM or 97.9FM in The Bitterroot Valley.  How about a live stream feed at www.107theranch.com.

The WineGuyMike Radio Show airs weekly on Wednesday mornings at 8:20AM MDT, come and join in on the fun you never know what we are going to talk about.

The show is sponsored by Grizzly Liquor, “Missoula’s Best Choice”.  Follow Grizzly Liquor on their Facebook fan page – Grizzly Liquor Missoula

Today’s WineGuyMike recommendations at Grizzly Liquor; Castle Rock Pinot Noir which sells for $9.95, 14 Hands white wine blend and the 14 Hands red wine blend, both sell for $ 9.70 and are terrific sipping wines.

WineGuyMike wine and recipe pairing application:

http://winendine.snapapps.com/Default.aspx

Today’s winning question on the WineGuyMike Facebook fan page is from Missoula Winery owner Phil Leiritz.

Q. Phil asks; Mike what is the proper serving temperature for the following:

  • White wine
  • Red wine
  • Champagne and Sparkling wine
  • Port

A. Okay Phil here we go, let’s start by pointing out that a refrigerators temperature is 35°F or 2°C .  Ideal storage temperature for all wines is 55°F or13°C.  These aforementioned temperatures provide good perspective for suggested serving temperatures.  Depending on how your wines have been stored will dictate what you need to do to prepare your wines before serving them.

  • White wine – simple white wines that are generally inexpensive should be served very cold at 45°F or 7°C.  Fruity light white wine should be served at 45°F-50°F or 7°C-10°C, these would be your Pinot Grigio’s, Sauvignon Blanc, lighter Australian whites, and French whites from Alsace, Bordeaux, and The Loire Valley.

Your full bodied white wines are best served at 50°F-60°F or 10°C-15.5°C.  These would be your California and Australian Chardonnay’s, White Burgundy wines, Full bodied German wines like Auslese and Spatlese, and your really nice dessert wine like Late Harvest Rieslings and Sauterens.

  • Red wine – Light bodied and fruity red wines should be served at 50°F-60°F or 10°C-15.5°C.  These wines would be young Spanish Rioja’s, Chinon and Bourgueil from The Loire Valley in France, and Italian Dolcetto, young Valpolicella and Chianti.

Big full bodied red wines should be served at 60°F-65°F or 15.5°C-18.5°C.  These wines types would be French Bordeaux’s, Burgundy’s, reds from the Rhone Valley, California Cabernet Sauvignon’s and Merlot’s, Australian Shiraz or Syrah’s, Oregon Pinot Noir’s, Zinfandel’s, Italian Brunello’s and Barolo’s.

  • Champagne and Sparkling Wines – Sparkling wines, Prosecco and Cava should be served at 41°F and Champagne should be served at 45°F or 5°C-7°C respectively.
  • Ice Wines – These should be served at 43°F or 6°C.
  • Port – Both Tawny and Vintage Ports should be served at 57°F or 14°C.

WineGuyMike recommended wine this week:

2009 Castle Rock California Cuvee Pinot Noir – Castle Rock Pinot Noir is produced from grapes grown in a carefully selected group of California vineyards, at which the climate and soil conditions provide excellent growing conditions for this Burgundian varietal. The wine is elegant and medium-bodied, offering aromas of cherry, tea and herbal spice.  On the palate it is smooth with a silky texture and mild tannins, giving flavors of black cherry, plum and spice, and finishing long and harmoniously.  This versatile food wine pairs well with lamb, veal, salmon and light pasta dishes.

2009 Castle Rock California Cuvee Pinot Noir

2009 Castle Rock California Cuvee Pinot Noir

Recipe Pairing; Pan-Grilled Salmon with Mint

Ingredients:

½ cup rice vinegar

2 tablespoons honey

1 teaspoon vegetable oil

2 (6-ounce) salmon fillets (about 1 inch thick)

Cooking spray

1/8 teaspoon salt

¼ cup fresh mint leaves

 Directions:

1.  Combine the first 3 ingredients in a shallow dish, and stir with a whisk.  Add fish, turning to coat, and marinate in refrigerator for 10 minutes.  Remove fish from dish, reserving marinade.

2.  Heat a medium nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat.  Add fish, skin sides down; cook 5 minutes.  Turn fish over; pour reserved marinade over fish.  Cook and additional 5 minutes or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork.  Place fish on individual serving plates; spoon pan juices over fish.  Sprinkle with salt; top with mint leaves.  Yield 2 servings.

 Calories 357 (39% from fat); Fat 15.3g (sat 3.4g, mono 6.2g, poly 4.5g); Protein 36.2g; Carb 17.5g; Fiber 0g; Chol 87mg; Iron 0.6mg; Sodium 22.7mg; Calc 10mg

WineGuyMike’s Wine Lingo

Crisp – Fresh, Bright, Young, and Slightly Acidic.  Wine Types are Sauvignon Blanc, Vermentino, and Chablis

Grassy – Refers to Herbal Characteristics often associated with Sauvignon Blanc

Oaky – A reference to a nuance in a wine resulting from wooden oak barrels that wines are aged in.  This term is common to Chardonnay’s and Cabernet wines.

Velvety – This term characterizes a wines texture.  This term would be used with a wine that has a rich and supple mouth feel.

Match the words that you think make sense; these words are descriptors for wine:

Bright = Flinty an epiphany in your mouth

Rich = Subtle mellow, smooth, decadent, just easy and fulfilling

Lively = Crisp the wine is refreshing, a zing, literally comes to life in your mouth

Intense = Juicy big, bold, forward just tastes like fruit you could bite into

Velvety = Aromatic sexy, goes down like silk, fills the room with its aroma

From My Table to Yours,

WineGuyMike

 
 
 

WineGuyMike

WineGuyMike

WineGuyMike Radio Show 07/14/10


Check out the radio show on The Ranch 107.1FM or 97.9FM in The Bitterroot Valley.  How about a live stream feed at www.107theranch.com.

The WineGuyMike Radio Show airs weekly on Wednesday mornings at 8:20AM MDT, come and join in on the fun you never know what we are going to talk about.

The show is sponsored by Grizzly Liquor, “Missoula’s Best Choice”.  Follow Grizzly Liquor on their Facebook fan page – Grizzly Liquor Missoula

Today’s WineGuyMike recommendations at Grizzly Liquor; Georges duBoeuf Beaujolais – Villages which sells for $8.55.  It has scored 87 points and is great for picnics and bbq’s.
My second recommendation is Martin Codax Albarino which sells for $12.70.  It is very crisp and wonderful with salads and seafood. It also scored 87 points.

Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais-Villages 2009    

Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais-Villages 2009 750ML

Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais-Villages 2009 750ML

Profile

Appellation A.O.C. BEAUJOLAIS-VILLAGES

Date A.O.C. status April 1950

Single varietal Gamay

Vineyard Altitude 800 to 1,500 feet

Surface area 15,000 acres

Soil Granite with occasional sand

 Background and Character

Beaujolais-Villages takes its name from a number of wine-producing villages located in the area of Beaujolais which have long been identified for the superior quality of their wine.  In this instance “superior” refers to greater complexity in bouquet, higher concentration and deeper flavor.  Its distinctive character sets a kind of middle ground for Beaujolais with its unique, casual charm and the prestigious top ten Cru wines to the north.  If one could compare a glass of joyful Beaujolais to Mozart’s Cherubino, then Beaujolais-Villages would be Figaro, more mature, worldly and self-assured. This is perhaps that ideal, multipurpose red wine we all look for.

 Wine Making

Harvesting— Manual only, whole bunches unstemmed

Temperature of fermentation — 26 to 28°C(79 to 83°F)

Length of maceration — 6 to 8 days

Yeasts — Indigenous

 Tasting Notes

This Beaujolais-Villages displays a deep, luminous cherry color, red with bluish tints.  The bouquet offers ripe red fruit character, suggesting strawberry and black currant, with a touch of cinnamon.  Velvet-like in the mouth, with soft tannins, it is well-balanced and complete.  A wine which lends itself to all occasions, from the apéritif to the cheese board.

Martin Codax Albarino 2008

Martin Codax Albarino 2008

Martin Codax Albarino 2008

The Albarino grape is reputed to be a relative of German riesling and may have been brought to Spain by monks as far back as the 12th century.  It is grown in the Rias Baixas region of Galicia, which is snuggled in between Portugal and the Basque country on the rugged and beautiful Atlantic shores.  Martin Codax is a name given to this white wine by the group of small producers who have banded together to make wine in the Bodegas de Vilarino-Cambados.

Winemaker’s notes: This wine has an attractive straw-greenish yellow color, with ripe lemon nuances.  It’s bright and slightly sparkling and stands out for its special intensity and elegance.  The bouquet is reminiscent of damp, dewy fresh herbs with a perfume of semi-ripe apples.  There is a  fine sparkling sensation on the palate, with a complexity of tastes denoting the freshness of vegetation in the valley and the essence of the varietal.  

Question of the week

Q. Rebecca Birket Fyffe Hi Mike, I’m a newbie to the world of wine (I think the last wine I really enjoyed came out of a box when I was in highschool!) I have tried wines in my adult life and they all seem to have a bitter kick to them.  Is there a wine that is more geared towards someone like me who just loves fruity flavor

A. Rebecca this is a really good question and I’m going to recommend a Beaujolais for you.  This wine style is made from 100% Gamay grapes from The Burgundy Region of France.  The wine is light and fruity and meant to be consumed right away.  Beaujolais can also be served lightly chilled which is great for the Summer time.  There are three quality levels Beaujolais, Beaujolais – Villages which is a blend of wine from a multiple villages in Beaujolais, and then there is the Cru which is named for the village whom produces the finest wine of all the villages, of which there are ten Crus or villages, in Beaujolais.

Beaujolais Nouveau is even lighter and frutier in style than regular Beaujolais.  This wine goes from vine to shelf in a matter of weeks, don’t not save this wine but do drink it now.  Beaujolais Nouveau is released each year on the 3rd Thursday of November.

Beaujolais pairs well with cheese, veal, fish, or fowl.  Food that is light fair, and not overly seasoned pairs well with Beaujolais.

This has been a big week for WineGuyMike, the beverage and food pairing website was launched Monday morning.  Here is the link to the new site; http://bit.ly/bCBo01 (click on link or copy and paste in your web browser) this will be moved to a new server in about a month but I will let you know when that happens.

The WineGuyMike application pairs Wine and food recipes, Beer and food recipes, Spirits and mixed drink recipes, and a party planner for all of your beverages.  Try out the Search feature to find what you are looking for quickly.  I think you will find this application very useful.  http://bit.ly/bCBo01 (click on link or copy and paste to your web browser).

From My Table to Yours,

WineGuyMike

Questions for WineGuyMike Radio Show 7/07/10


Remember if I don’t discuss your question this week you’re still in the mix for the $20.00 gift certificate from our friends and sponsor Grizzly Liquor, “Missoula’s Best Choice”. 

Todays WineGuyMike wine recommendation – Prosecco Rustico($20.00) and Tutella Prosecco($10.00).  For the Cava’s I’m recommending the Segura Vivudas and the Cristalino (both about $10.00) at Grizzly Liquor

 The best place to share and ask questions is on my WineGuyMike Facebook fan page or at www.wineguymike.com, this site is under construction and always will be because of the evolutionary nature of the site. 

Q. Katie asks; What’s the difference between prosecco and cava wines, and how should they be paired with food?  I really like sparkling wines, but don’t know enough to make good choices. 

A. Prosecco is an Italian wine, generally a dry sparkling wine, usually made from grape variety Glera, which is also known as Prosecco. The Veneto region of Italy is where Glera/ Prosecco is grown and produced, traditionally in an area near Conegliano and Valdobbiadene, in the hills north of Treviso.

In recent years Prosecco sales, world wide, have seen double-digit percent increases since 1998. This is due in large part to comparatively low prices and improved production techniques that have lead to the high-quality dry sparkling wines that are produced for todays market.

Prosecco is mainly produced as a sparkling wine in either the fully sparkling (spumante) or lightly sparkling (frizzante, gentile) styles.  Prosecco spumante, which has undergone a full secondary fermentation, is the more expensive style.  The various sparkling wines may contain some Pinot Bianco or Pinot Grigio wine.  Depending on their sweetness, Proseccos are labeled “brut”, “extra dry”, or “dry”, with the brut being the driest.

Unlike Champagne, Prosecco does not ferment in the bottle consequently the wine goes off or gets old quickly and should be drunk as young as possible, preferably within one year.

 Prosecco is Italy’s answer to refreshing, well-made, sparkling wine that is low in alcohol, about 11 to 12 percent by volume.  Created from predominately Prosecco grapes in the northern Veneto region of Italy in the foothills of the Alps.  Prosecco is light, affordable, and fun.  This Sparkling wine is aromatic and crisp, with nuances of yellow apple, citrus, pear, white peach, and apricot.  Today’s Proseccos tend to be  dry and very bubbly and typically will present itself as light, fresh, with an initial intense bouquet/aroma, but simple and straight forward compared to Champagne.  Prosecco is made using the Charmat method rather than the Champagne method, the French method of making sparkling wine.  The Charmat method is a second fermentation in pressurized tanks rather than in individual bottles.  The shorter, tank fermentation is preferable for Prosecco because it preserves the freshness and the flavor of the grapes.

Prosecco is now also  being  grown in Brazil, Romania, Argentina and Australia.

Food pairing; Oysters, shell-fish and gently seasoned lighter fish.

Cava originated in the Catalonia region at the in the late 19th century.  Originally the wine was known as Champaña until Spanish producers officially adopted the term “Cava” (cellar) in 1970.  Cava wines are fermented and aged in the bottle in underground cellars.  The early Cava industry was bolstered by the phylloxera epidemic of the late 19th Century that resulted in vineyards being uprooted and re-planted with red grape varieties.  Mimicking the success of Champagne  the Cava wine producers  replanted with white grape varieties like Macabeo, Parellada and Xarel·lo to use for sparkling wine production.  These are the primary grapes of Cava today although some producers are introducing the Champagne wine grapes of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.  Today 95% of Spain’s total Cava production is from Catalonia.

Cava is produced in different styles ranging from dry to sweet; Brut Nature, Brut (extra dry), Seco (dry), Semiseco (medium) and Dulce (sweet).  Under Spanish Denominación de Origen laws, Cava can be produced in six wine regions and must be made according to the Traditional Method with second fermentation in the bottle.  The grapes used to produce Cava are Macabeo, Parellada, Xarel·lo, Chardonnay, Pinot noir, and Malvasia.  The Chardonnay grape is a late comer to the scene despite being a traditional grape used to produce Champagne.  It was not introduced in the production of Cava until the 1980s.

In order for the wines to be called ‘Cava’, they must be made in the traditional Méthode Champenoise. Wines made via the low-cost Charmat process may only be called ‘Spanish sparkling wine’.   A rosé style of Cava is also produced by adding in small amounts of red wines from Cabernet Sauvignon, Garnacha or Monastrell to the wine.

Cava made by the Champagne method, is a very acceptable alternative to French champagne.  Cava is usually made by the Coupage method, whereby must, a.k.a(grape juice) from different grape varieties is subjected to the first fermentation which is blended until it  is consistent with the wine that the winemaker wants to produce .  After the Coupage, the wine is put into bottles and yeast and sugar added.  It is then cellared for the second fermentation and aging.

Food pairing; Oysters, shell-fish and gently seasoned lighter fish.

 From My Table to Yours,

WineGuyMike

Domaine de Pouy 2008 Vin de Pays des Cotes de Gascogne


Domaine de Pouy 2008 Vin de Pays des Cotes de Gascogne

Domaine de Pouy 2008 Vin de Pays des Cotes de Gascogne

Domaine: Domaine de Pouy
Vintage: 2008
Producer: Yves Grassa
Variety: 60% Ugni Blanc, 40% Colombard
Country: France
Region: Southwest-Armagnac
Yves Grassa, the proprietor of Domaine de Pouy, has produced this light-bodied dry white that is the standard to which others are held.   This wine is a perrenial favorite of Robert Parker for the last two decades.  The estate is located in the foothills of Pyrénées about two hours southwest of Bordeaux.  Cold fermentation of this Ugni Blanc grape produces the crisp, fresh, aromatic nature of this wine.  Nuances of green apple, and lemon grass make this wine refreshing to drink.  A  wonderful balance of fruit and acid in this wine provide a nice mouth-feel.
The 2008 Domaine de Pouy is comprised of 60% Ugni Blanc (this is Trebbiano in Italy)  and 40% Colombard and this is an amazing blend.  The wines are made using skin contact andgrapes are kept cold and left in contact with their skins for up to six hours which produces the bold bouquet,  bright fruit, and crispness that this wine is known for.
CheeseGirlSara recommends Berkshire Blue, a cows milk cheese from Lenox, MA,  Capricho di Capra  a Spanish chevre and Valdeon, a Spanish (cows milk) blue.  Of the three cheeses CheeseGirlSara tasted to recommend with the Domaine de Pouy she decided unanimously that although the goat cheese was  good, the crispness of the wine was a bit much for the soft texture of the goat cheese.  The Blue cows milk cheese Valdeon stood up to the wine and enhanced it.   CheeseGirlSara thinks Domaine de Pouy would be great at a summer luncheon party with smoked salmon with a caper sauce.
From My table to Yours,
 
WineGuyMike