Welcome to Part 2 of Twenty-Five and Fine! I promised you six more wines from six more countries, and here they are! Some of them just make the cut, but still won’t break the bank at $25 or less. I think you will find some of them very curious and just may want to go out and see if you can find them for yourself. Read on…
Germany – 2009 Reichscraf von Kesselstatt (RK) Riesling
This is me and my girl…she loves to bake, and just because, she made this coconut cream pie. Now, I love Rieslings because you can pair them with practically anything. No exception with this one! Strong petrol on the nose, which is typical of a Mosel Riesling, but this beautiful chartreuse coloured wine is fresh and easy with its crisp acidity and notes of apples, pears and white peaches. It’s a great buy at $22, and definately best served chilled!
New Zealand – 2011 Astrolabe Pinot Gris
When most of us think New Zealand, we automatically think Sauvignon Blanc right? Pinot Gris often does not even cross our radar! But the Marlborough doesn’t just make great Sauv Blancs, they also make this amazing Pinot Gris! If you’re looking for an outstanding summer sipping wine, look no further! Gather the girls, bring out the cheese and crackers, put the patio furniture out, raise the umbrella, because this one is a winner. Medium-high acidity with stonefruit and fresh pear, this wine finishes well with a smooth mouth feel. It’s not sweet like the Riesling above, but the off-dry higher acidity will leave you with a hint of sweetness. At $23, you just may find yourself stocking up on a few of these. Now all you need is some conversation and a few good laughs with some friends!
Portugal – 2011 Monte des Mouras de Arraiolos
In Portugal, they call red wine Tinto. Actually, in all Portugese (or Spanish) language, red wine is referred to as Tinto. A regional wine made from the Aragonez (you might know it as the Spaniards do – Tempranillo) , Trincadeira (or Tinta Amarela) and Alicante Bouschet grapes, native to Portugal, they blend together for a pretty good wine. Cherries, dust and undercurrents of pencil shavings on the nose, but it blasts you with sour cherry in the mouth and immediately fairly high acidity! Not much tannins here, and a hint of cocoa at the finish as well. Nice, easy drinking wine for about $12. A roasted pork tenderloin with a sweet barbecue sauce comes to mind as a pairing.
Spain– 2010 Juan Gil
Out of the Jumilla region of Spain, the Monastrell grape has become one of my very favourite varietals. At $22, this wine is an extremely popular buy, and there’s a good reason why. Dark cherry with lots of blackberry aromas. Sweet spice on the palate, it’s a long lasting wine. And get this…it tastes even better the second day. So to make it easy drinking, open it up and let it sit for a while before drinking it. And if you have some left over, even better! Enjoy it the next day! It would pair well with any grilled beef dishes.
South Africa – 2010 Creative Block “5” Bordeaux Style Blend
A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, Cabernet France and Petit Verdot. I’m not typically a South African wine fan, but this one was really well done. This had a lot going on with Merlot as the largest component in this blend providing the structure, while the Cabernet Sauvignon fills out the palate. The addition of Malbec adds upfront fruit, particularly ripe black cherries, as the Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot add complexity to make this blend really unique. High acid, medium tannins and flavours of smoked deli meats on the palate made for a well rounded wine. And the labels are cool too! Combining artwork from various artists to emulate what’s inside the bottle: combining various varietals to create interesting and satisfying blends. It makes this cut at exactly $25.
Canada – 2011 Red Rooster Bantam
C’mon, I had to feature a wine from my home and native land! A lovely assemblage of Viognier, Chardonnay, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc and Gewurtztraminer, it brings a combination of fruity aromas and flavours from each of the five grapes that mingle perfectly together. Lots of fresh summer flavours of pear, apple, pineapple, peach and tangerine, all dancing between those floral notes of the Viognier. All that fresh BC fruit in one glass! Not too sweet, this is also refreshing summer wine to look forward to! Enjoy it while it’s young and get it for $15.25. Now that’s a good Canadian bargain!!
And that will wrap up part 2 for some fabulous wines under $25. Choose one, or choose them all, but whatever you choose…I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised. Enjoy!