THIS is your big Winter Red!!
I’m 1000% serious. This is absolutely THE wine you are gonna fall head over heels for during the chillier months that are upon us. The best part? You’ve probably never heard of these grapes. You might not know how to say Verso or Salento (VAIR-so and sa-LAIN-to). Heck, you might not have had an Italian wine quite like this before. But trust me, YOU’RE GONNA FLIP!!
This wine is special for several reasons– first, it comes to us from one of my favorite portfolios, Small Vineyards. In order to be included in Small Vineyards, the wine must be hand-harvested, from a family-owned estate, and be farmed in an ecologically friendly manner. Note the word organic is not in use here; in my opinion it’s a bit irrelevant- you can trust that this wine comes from people that really cares about their impact on the environment as well as making the best wine possible, which I trust over a USDA certification eight days a week.
Second, this wine is big and sexy for a cool reason; a portion of the grapes (no, I’m not sure which ones) were allowed to “raisin”- which is exactly what it sounds like! Also known as “appassimento”, it is a process of allowing the grapes to hang out and dry a bit- concentrating their sugars. It is a labor-intensive process, which results in the reduction of the yield. A labor of love, I would call it. So it means they end up with LESS total wine to put into bottles, BUT the wine that results is so rich and flavorful it’ll leave you speechless- and (AND!) it it not weighed down with a high alcohol content! This wine comes in at a solid 14% abv. That’s a full 1.5-2 percentage points less than your average Cali Cab, Zin or Shriraz- the typical wines “big red” drinkers tend to like. Balance, people- balance! And it means you can drink a bit more of this guy without that thick, heady feeling you get after two glasses of Zinfandel.
Alright, so I got wine-nerdy there for a minute- so let’s get moving with HOW IT TASTES! Because that’s what’s gonna keep you coming back for bottle after bottle. But before I forget, this wine is a blend of 60% Negroamarao, 35% Primitivo (aka Zinfandel’s parent grape) and 15% Malvasia Nera. A giant nose of figs, cloves, anise, vanilla, raisins (go figure), a hint of olives and black peppercorns, a nice lift of dried flowers and red berries and blueberry. The texture is silky, polished and mouth-coating. There’s some unique spicing at work here that I can’t quite pinpoint… I want to say it’s Sumac, but I can’t be positive. It’s taunting me. The wine finishes with elegance and a tangy little pop.
So I saved the BEST FOR LAST! This bottle will cost ya just $16!!
To add to the fun, this wine is available as part of TURKEY PACK #2 at Cellar on Greene this year! That means you can have it along with three other swell bottles to take to your Thanksgiving feast quickly and effortlessly. Never heard of a Turkey Pack? Well, you must click here and check them out. They’re only our most popular wine club item every year! Good news is, you can absolutely grab them as a walk-in purchase- it’ll take 2 seconds for us to pack you one. So you can leave it til last minute, if you’re at all like me!
Happy Thanksgiving, wine-lovers!