It is that time of year in the north – time to enjoy a rich dinner, great wine and a great new movie.
Here are a few unknown wines that are perfect for warming you up with great flavors.
Nebbiolo – This wine of often overlooked. It is also a deceiving wine, looking pale but it packs a load of flavor, acidity, and tannins. You will typically taste cherries, plums, violets, smoke, and tar. It is a medium bodied rich wine and often is high in alcohol. Perfect with winter squash, mushrooms, roasted lamb, and smoked duck. The most known region for Nebbiolo is Piedmont, Italy (Barolo and Barbaresco) but there are now wineries in many other regions growing and making great Nebbiolo’s. This wine needs air and should be decanted for at least 45 minutes to 2 hours before drinking. Langhe Nebbiolo Elio Sandri mid $20’s or the high-point Barolo Cascina Nuova in the mid $50’s.
Shiraz – Another not-so-often consumed wine. Shiraz is big, bold and high in alcohol. Filled with powerful fruit flavors with savory hints. Dark in color with a jammy concentration of black fruits, ripe tannins and notes of pepper. A perfect wine for grilled or braised meat and wild game. Shiraz and Syrah are the same grape grown in different regions, thus giving a different flavor profile. Shiraz is from warmer climates, such as Australia. Serve this wine slightly chilled around 60-65 degrees. The Two Hands Vella’s Garden Shiraz is a perfect example in the mid $50’s or The Pundit in the mid $20’s.
Sangiovese – Earthy and rustic this is a perfect winter wine. Pairing beautifully with roasted vegetables, tomato-based sauces, and hard cheese. You will taste tart cherry, plum, strawberry, smoke, tobacco, and leather. This is a highly tannic and acidic wine which makes it perfect for big flavors. Considered one of the best Sangiovese’s is a Brunello di Montalcino (ageable for up to 18 years). You may know this grape by another name, Chianti. A great bottle is Podalirio Toscana around $40, or a Chianti Classico in the mid $20’s.
Orange Wines – If you are unfamiliar with orange wines, the wine making process is a natural and very old style, one that has become a recent huge fad. They are robust, bold having flavors of brazil and hazel nuts, very ripe apples, sourdough and orange rind. They are dry, tannic and a bit sour. Perfect with spicy bold curry, traditional Japanese cuisine and meats dishes. We carry several, the LeRagnaie Toscana Bianco, is from and a few others all are in the mid $20’s. Many orange wine are small production wines.