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  • La Mancha Spanish wine

    La Mancha wine and region

    La Mancha white Spanish wineIn terms of area this is by far the largest DO of Spain at 194,864 hectares. In this immense area of La Mancha, where once the legendary Don Quixote tilted at windmills, the wine-growers fought against what they regarded as arbitrary rules laid down by the European Community. Even today not every-body in La Mancha accepts that there is a vast lake of surplus wine in Europe. Fortunately more and more bodegas are addressing themselves to the demands of the market and improving the bad name associated with La Mancha wine. These bodegas have substantially replaced their equipment and directed themselves towards making quality Spanish wines. Thanks to the effort of these innovative houses the name of La Mancha has increasingly been linked to quality wines, that can be

  • Les Baux-de-Provence French wine

    This area is actually part of the Côteaux d'Aix-enProvence, but gained its own AC in 1995. The landscape here is dominated by the rugged and picturesque Alpilles hills that are interspersed with vineyards and olive groves. The area gained its own AC because of its local microclimate and enforcement of stricter production criteria. Only the red and rose wines from a designated 300 hectares surrounding the town of Les Baux-de-Provence are permitted to bear this appellation.

     

    LES BAUX-DE-PROVENCE ROSE

    The colour is the first thing that strikes one. It is a superb salmon-pink, while the nose is reminiscent of redcurrant, strawberry, and other red fruit for thise French wine. The taste is fresh, fruity (grapefruit and cherry), and very pleasant. This is a rose that can charm most people. Drink it chilled at 10-12°C (50-53.6°F).

     

    LES BAUX-DE-PROVENCE ROUGE

    The colour of this French wine is a fairly dark ruby red. The nose is complex and strong with hints of wood, vanilla, liquorice, plum jam, caramel, coffee, humus, and occasionally of cherry brandy. The taste is fairly coarse in the first five years because of the strong youthful tannin but after some years in the bottle the taste becomes more rounded, fuller, and more powerful. Drink this French wine at 16- 18°C (60.8-64.4°F) .

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  • Listrac-Médoc, Loupiac and Lussac-Saint-Émilion Bordeaux Wines

    Listrac-Médoc Bordeaux Wine

    Loupiac Bordeaux WineMonsieur d’Armailhac, in his 1855 book on viticulture in the Médoc, said the Listrac plateau could be compared to the region’s most favorably placed properties. With magnificent outcrops on either side—Forréad to the south and Fourcas to the north—the five-kilometer-long Listrac plateau is one of the highest in the Médoc. Monsieur Boissenot, a wine specialist, describes Listrac wine as follows: “Listrac wine presents in the mouth an extraordinary body, enveloping the palate. Its presence is built. This is the wine of oenophiles, this is the wine that you chew, so tight is its texture. Solidly constituted, tannic and structured, it is the perfect meeting of the fruit provided by Caber-net and the strength supplied by Merlot. As a result it is ample and silky, a mixture of spirit and virility.

  • Macedonia/Serbia/Bosnia Wines

    Macedonia Wine

    Macedonian WinesThe landscape of the independent state of Macedonia is dominated by mountains, valleys, and wonderful lakes in the south of the country. The climate has influences from the Mediterranean, Central European (continental), and the mountains. The present state of the wine industry in Macedonia is still relatively unknown.

    Many of the sweeter Macedonian wines disappear into the German market to satisfy that country’s demand for ‘liebliche’ wine. Only a few dry red wines are worth the effort to discover at present but this will probably change soon.

  • Make Wine

    Making wine and fermentation

    Making wine in oaksIf the wine is not to have secondary fermentation, it must be removed from the vats, and this process is known as racking or back blending. Before this can happen the wine-maker must decide the style of wine he wants. If it is to be medium or sweet, the fermentation will have to be stopped artificially using filters. The wine is passed through very fine screens which extract all the yeast so there can be no more fermentation. In some areas, Germany for example, sweet natural juice is then added to increase the residual sugar content of the wine.

  • Making wine

    Many of the world's vest producers believe that great wine is first created in the vineyard. 

    Indeed, it is difficult to argue with the suggestion that using top-quality ingredients helps when transforming grapes into red wine or good wine. White wine can be made from both white and black grapes. Crushing breaks the skins, after which de-staking takes place. Gentle pressing is favoured and skins are removed. Fermentation traditionally happends in oak barrels, although today, when minimal change is required, most white wines will ferment in stainless steel vats, Maturation in oak barrels can add another dimension and flavour profile to a good wine.

    Red wine must be made from black grapes. This time the juice is fermented on the skins for better colour extraction. The juice, which runs freely after fermentation, is of the highest quality. The remaining pomace, or skins, are further crushed to release any more juice, which is generally used in blending for the best red wine.

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  • Merlot Grapes

     A member of the Bordeaux family, Merlot, in constrast to Cabernet Sauvignon, is soft, fruity, fleshy, and less tannic. It's the principal grape variety in the wines of St Emilion and Pomerol, and is often blended with Cabernet Franc. These Bordeaux wines are much more accessible when young, but they invariably age quickly, creating a supple, smooth, and velvety texture. Merlot is the most planted grape variety in Boredeaux.

     Its characteristics tend to lean towards plum, blachberry, fruitcake, and currantly tones, In cooler climates, such as northern Italy, grass notes are evident, Due to its softness and moderate tannins, Merlot, which has a natural affinity with oak, is often blended with Cabernet Sauvignon.

    merlot grape A grape which thrives on clay and limestone-based soils, it is all the range in California and Chile, where rich, even chocolaty Merlots are mede. The dense Merlots of California can be extremely good and again can provide perfect blending material for Cabernet, as seen in the Mondavi-Rothschild icon wine, Opus One. The relatively cool climate of New Zealand enables Merlot, in good vintages, to obtain excellent balance between fruit and acidity. In contrast, Australia's warmer vineyards are not necessarily ideal, as acidity cand sometimes be found wanting, making 'cooler' Coonawarra and Western Australia more favourable locations.

     Bordeaux (Sr Emilion and Pomerol), Australia, Chile, Southern France, New Zealand, South Africa, California, and Washington State.

     

    Cabernet Sauvignon Grapes

    cabernet sauvignon Grapeswhite-grapes

    One of the word's most popular black grapes, Cabernet Sauvignon's deep colour, blackcurrant aroma and flavour is the backbone of many is the backbone of many full-bodid red wines.

     

    Pinot Noir Grapes

    pinot noir Grapes white-grapes 

    A difficult 'customer' described by one well-known winemaker as a 'moving target of a grape variety', on top form Pinot Noir can make the most complex and hedonistic of red wines.   Pinot Noir has fewer colouring pigments than other dark-skinned varieties, so it can appear to be lighter or more aged, when compared to wines such and almost inky on occasions.

    Syrah Grapes

    Syrah Grapeswhite-grapes

    The Hill of Hermitage and vineyards steeply overlooking the Rhône provide the home of Syrah and one of the most famous place names associated with this great grape variety. Hermitage, Cornas and Côte Rôtie are full-bodied red wines, while Crozes Hermitage and St Jopeph are generally a touch lighter. Syrah is a hardy grape, growing well in poor soil, such as the

    Other Red Grapes

    other red Grapeswhite-grapes

    An extremely versatile variety of grapes, Chenin Blanc is capable of making dry and crisp white wines that are great as an aperitif, through to medium, unctuous and sweet styles. Due to the keeen and vibrant acidity often found in Chenin Blanc grape, they make brilliant food wines and can stay in good shape for many years after the vitange.

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  • Moravian Wine

    Moravian Czech Wine region

    Moravian Czech Wine CellarThe Mikulov wine area is one of the largest that extends from Novomlynske Nädrze to the border with Austria.

    The best-known towns are Valtice, Mikulov, and Lednice. This is an area of mainly white Czech wines that are fulsome in taste with pleasing acidity and striking character. A number of Czech wines are produced here with quality predicates, mainly made from Ryzlink Vlayky, Veltlinske Zelene, Muykät Moravsky, Ryzlink Rynsky, Chardonnay, and Aurelius. There is also a plant improvement station at Perna where frost and disease resistant grape varieties are developed.

  • More wine regions from Klein Karoo

    CABERNET SAUVIGNON

    This is the ubiquitous Bordeaux grape variety. Here in South Africa, Cabernet Sauvignon produces sturdy, highly tannic wines with herbal aromas and hints of red fruit and blackcurrant.

    There is a good balance between fruit and ripe woody notes. It is superb with red meat and mature hard cheeses. Drinking temperature is 60.8-62.6°F (16-17°C).

    MERLOT

    This Bordeaux grape appears to be gaining ground in South Africa, especially in the Stellenbosch and Paarl regions. Merlot is a full-bodied and velvet smooth wine with rich and warm nuances that include cherry. Drinking temperature is 60.8°F (16°C).

    PINOT NOIR

    This grape, like Chardonnay originates in Burgundy. It is a fairly temperamental variety which only produces excellent results in good hands and in good years. A good Pinot Noir is characteristically light in colour and quite aromatic with herbal notes and those of red fruit in its nose. Drinking temperature is 57.2-60.8°F (14-16°C).

    SHIRAZ

    The Shiraz here is often an amenable if not slightly exotic wine with sensual nose and taste. This wine is often excellent with plenty of warmth and spicy undertones and is ideal with grilled lamb or game. Drinking temperature is 60.8°F (16°C) .

    TlNTA BAROCCA

    Tinta Barocca is a surprising wine that is full-bodied, warm, exciting, but also fruity, elegant, and refined. Drinking temperature is 60.8°F (16°C).

    BLENDS

    The Bordeaux type blends of Cabernet Sauvignon/Cabernet Pranc/Merlot (Meerlust Rubicon) are often excellent, especially where the process of cask maturing in oak is well done. These are superb, fullbodied, rich, and complex wines with blackcurrant and bilberry in their bouquet, mixed with spices and vanilla.

     Cabernet-Shiraz are very exciting wines which often age extremely well. Serve this full-bodied, warm, powerful, and complex wine with roast or grilled meat or mature hard cheese. The fairly new Pinotage-Merlots are quite promising. This is a wine filled with taste that combines spice and fruit. Drinking temperature is 60.8- 62.6°F (16-17°C).

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  • Oltrepo Pavese DOC from Lombardy Italy

    Oltrepo Pavese Italian wine

    Oltrepo Pavese DOC ITALIAN Wine Region

    This area is typical of the small zones referred to in the introduction to Italian wines. The small nominated area produces about 20 different types of Italian wine from a similar number of grape varieties.  The name indicates that this area of some 40 small communities lies 'over the Po, in Pavia'. The vines grow on gently sloping hills in the south of the province. Oltrepo Pavese wines can be white, rose, red, and sparkling.

     

    OLTREPO PAVESE ROSSO ITALIAN WINE

    This ruby red Italian wine is highly aromatic, full bodied, and sometimes high in tannin. In youth it often has a hint of carbonic acid to tingle the tongue. Made with Barbera, Croatina, and several other types of grape, including Pinot Nero. Drink this Italian wine at 50-57.2°F (10- 14°C) .

    Riserva has a hint of orange colour and is higher in alcohol with greater depth. Drink Riserva Italian wine at 57.2- 60.8°F (14- 16°C ).

     

    OLTREPO PAVESE ROSATO ITALIAN WINE

    Prom the same grapes as the red, this Italian wine has an attractive pale cherry colour, mild taste but slight tingle. Drink this Oltrepo Italian wine at 50-57.2°F (10- 14°C) .

     Oltrepo Pavese Wine Map

    OLTREPO PAVESE BUTTAFUOCO ITALIAN WINE

    Also from the same grapes as the red, it is dry, full in flavour and rounded a slight tingle. There is also a lightly sparkling (frizzante). Drink this Oltrepo Pavese Italian wine at 50-57.2°F (10- 14°C) .

     

    OLTREPO PAVESE SANGUE DI GIUOA ITALIAN WINE

    A ruby red from the same grapes as the ordinary rosso but slightly sweet and with a post-fermentation tingle. The taste is full of flavour and pleasant. Drink this Italian wine  at 50- 53.6°F (10-12°C).

     

    OLTREPO PAVESE SPUMANTE ITALIAN WINE

    Bianco or rosato, the best of these is made by the metodo classico using at least 70% Pinot Nero, (minimum 70%), and a maximum of 30% Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, and Pinot Bianco. A very fresh and juicy wine with much fruit that is elegant.Drink this Italian wine at 42.8-46.4°F (6- 8°C).{jcomments on}

  • Other red grapes

    GAMAY GRAPES

     Gamay is the Beaujolais grape, know for its light, soft, and easy-drinking qualities, Light in tannin and full of cherry and strawberry flavour, it peaks in the Beaujolais Crus, such as Morgon and Fleurie. In the Loire, where it is used to make red and rose wines, Gamay accounts for about fifteen percent of all French plantings.

    Gamay is usually fermented thrigh a process called maceration, where fermentation takes place below a protective layer of carbon dioxide.  Gamay is grown almost wxcusively in France, principaly in Burgundy and the Loire Valley.

     

    CABERNT FRANC GRAPES

     Within the trio of Bordeaux varieties, alongside Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, Cabernet Franc is often responsible for lending an aromatic quality and positive acidity to a blend. Known for its raspberry-like aroms, it is, after Pinot Noir, the best grape of the Loire, and is used to make wines such as Chinon. Back in Bordeaux, you will find Cabernet Franc's level of importance elevated in St Emilion, no more so than in the fabulous Château Cheval Blanc. As with Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc grows best in warmer climates but hot climates will have a negative effect on the flavour. The grape is sufficiently robust for the fermentation temperature not to be critical.

     Apart from Bordeaux and the Loire, Cabernet Franc is grown in Italy, the USAm Australia, and eastern Europe.

     

    GRANACHE/GARNACHA GRAPES

    The strawberry-scented and peppery tones, which often dominate a Côtes du Rhône or Châteauneuf-du-Pape, are the well-known characteristics of Grenace. At best, Grenache can reval concentration and great power from old, low-yielding vines. The Grenache thirives in the exceptionally not climates of Spain and the south France. It blends well with Shiraz and is used with Tempranillo for Riojas. In Spain, where it is known as Garnacha, it is renowned for provideing the colour and flavour in the fruity Rosados.

     As well as being plantes in Spain and France the Graneche is also found in Australia and USA.

     

    MALBEC GRAPES

     The hallmark characteristics of Malbec wines are deep colour and flavours full of black fruit. The grape originates from southwest France, in the Appellation of Cahors, where the wines were once known as 'Black Wines'. Expect to find Malbec in blends too, such as in Côtes de Bourg, Bordeaux, In recent years Malbec grapes hane thrived in irrigated, sandy soils in the warm climate of Argentina. Good crops combinated with advaces in winemaking techniques have produced some excellent, full-flavoured wines.

     Malbec is grown in France, Italy, Spain, South America, and the USA.

     

    NEBBIOLO GRAPES

    The two greatest names and expressions of the magical Nebbiolo grape, Barolo and Barberesco, grow in the hills of Piedmont, Italy. Often requiring age, these are rich and savouy wines, with aromas of tar and roses. Nebbiolo is fernented in temperature-controlled stainless steel vessels. Generally, it reqyires a long ageing period in wood in order to soften but trends are towards shorter periodsm in maceration and more bottle ageing.

     Apart from Piedmont, Nebbiolo is grown in California, South America, and the USA.

     

    PINOTAGE GRAPES

     Pinotage, the earthy, spicy, deeply coloured grape of South Africa, has aromas of plum skin and a generous, well-structured palate. The grape is actually a hybrid of the Pinot Noir and Cinsault grapes and was created by a professor at Stellenboch University in the 1920s.

     Although most associated with South Africam attempts have been made to grow the grape in New Zealand, Chile, and Australia.

     

    SANGIOVESE GRAPES

     Sangiovese, the great Italian grape, makes the concentrated red wines of Tuscany. It is the main consitituent of Chiantis, the best of which are rich, plummy, cherry-scented wines, highish in acidity, and with tannins which soften towards cedary elegance with age. The lighter wines, such as the Sangiovese de Romagna, are ideal for everyday drinking, They are best drunk while young and fresh.

     Apart from Italy, the Sangiovese has also impressed in California, Australia and Argentina.

     

    TEMPRANILLO GRAPES

     Spain's best red grape, Tempranillo is the backborn of Rioja and the wines of Ribera del Duero. Wines range in flavour from strawberry and vanilla lightness to full-bodied cherry-dominated depth, Tempranillo is also used in the production of port.

     The Tempranillo varietu is also grown in Portugal, where it is called Tinta Roriz, and Argentina.

     

    ZINFANDEL GRAPES

     Rarely senn outside of California, Zinfandel can vary enormously in style, from the bland, slightly pink 'White Zins'. to old vine, oak-aged, richy fruity, elegant wines, which finish with an note of tangy acidity.

    Part of the explanation for the variety of Zinfandel wines lies in the fact that the very latest technology is used in production. This technology ensures that the grapes rises to the challenge of adaptability.

    Grown in California, predominantly.

     

    Cabernet Sauvignon Grapes

    cabernet sauvignon Grapeswhite-grapes

    One of the word's most popular black grapes, Cabernet Sauvignon's deep colour, blackcurrant aroma and flavour is the backbone of many is the backbone of many full-bodid red wines.

    Merlot Grapes

    Merlot Grapes white-grapes 

     A member of the Bordeaux family, Merlot, in constrast to Cabernet Sauvignon, is soft, fruity, fleshy, and less tannic. It's the principal grape variety in the wines of St Emilion and Pomerol, and is often blended with Cabernet Franc.

    Pinot Noir Grapes

    pinot noir Grapes white-grapes 

    A difficult 'customer' described by one well-known winemaker as a 'moving target of a grape variety', on top form Pinot Noir can make the most complex and hedonistic of red wines.   Pinot Noir has fewer colouring pigments than other dark-skinned varieties, so it can appear to be lighter or more aged, when compared to wines such and almost inky on occasions.

    Syrah Grapes

    Syrah Grapeswhite-grapes

    The Hill of Hermitage and vineyards steeply overlooking the Rhône provide the home of Syrah and one of the most famous place names associated with this great grape variety. Hermitage, Cornas and Côte Rôtie are full-bodied red wines, while Crozes Hermitage and St Jopeph are generally a touch lighter. Syrah is a hardy grape, growing well in poor soil, such as the...

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  • Other wines from Champagne

    CHTEAUX CHAMPENOIS

    This wine has been classified AOC since 1974. It is available as white wine, red wine, and rose wine. These are exceptionally rare wines, remnants of the past.

    In addition to sparkling wines, Champagne also produces a number of still wines.

     

    ROSE DES RICEYS

    This is extremely rare and undoubtedly one of the best French roses. The simple Rose des Riceys is drunk young and chilled . When aged in oak the wine can be kept longer (more than 10 years) and is then   served   slightly   less   chilled   (50-53°F/10-12°C).

  • País Vasco and Ebro Spanish Wine

    País Vasco

    The Basque country has three faces: the picturesque coastline with endless countless beaches and fishing harbours, the large industrial towns, and the interior. The Basques have their own culture and own language that is possibly the original European language, and above all their own character. The Spanish part of the Basque country still has close ties with the French part (Pays Basque and Gascony or Gascogne). In this section we restrict ourselves to the north of the País Vasco, and in particular the areas of Bizkaya (Vizcaya) and Getaria (Guetaria). We use the Basque spellings with the Castilian spelling in brackets.

  • Piemonte Wine

    Piemonte Wine LabelPiemonte (Piedmont) ITALY REGION

    The name describes the position of the area: “at the foot of the mountains”, which is the Alps and bounds Italy with France and Switzerland. Countless rivers flow from these mountains to create beautiful valleys in the lower area. The city of Piedmont is Turin (Torino), famous for its large industry. The rest of the area is traditional agricultural. Piemont has great tradition, which has had many successful generations of farmers. The local food is known for its strong herbs and spices. The Italian red wine is very powerful, especially those made with the Nebbiolo grape. Italian wine has been made in Piedmont for a long time, referenced both in Greek and Roman literature. Today Piedmont, with Tuscany, is a temple to the art of Italian wine making.

     

    ASTI SPUMANTE DOCG AND MOSCATOD ‘ASTIDOCG

    The sparkling Asti Spumante is made by a natural second fermentation or in tanks. The colour is clear, ranges from yellow to golden and the nose is reminiscent of Muscat grapes which form the basis of this Italian wine. The taste is fruity, sweet and is a good balance between acidity and sweetness. Women prefer this Italian wine chilled. The drinking temperature should be 6- 8°C (42.8-46.4°F). The bubbles of Moscato d’ Asti, made with Muscat (or Moscato) grapes, is clear straw yellow with an intense bouquet of Muscat grapes. It has an aromatic and sweet taste, and acidity leaves an impression on the palate. A genuine Moscato d' Asti Italian wine is not cheap. The drinking temperature should be 8-10°C (46.4-50°F). 

    Piemonte Map Wine

    BARBARESCO DOCG ITALIAN WINE

    This Italian red wine made with Nebbiolo, the name from the Bararesco district of the providence of Cuneo. It’s an exceptional Italian wine and deep red colouring. It’s very aromatic and has a rich flavor. The Italian wine when young can be harsh, but is fine after a few years lying down. Riserva Italian wine needs four years to age. The drinking temperature of Italian wine when young should be 13- 15°C (55.4- 59°F) but 16- 17°C (60.5-62.6°F ) when fully mature.

     

    BAROLO DOCG ITALIAN WINE

    Probably is the best known Italian wine from Piedmont. Barolo is also made with Nebbiolo and originates from Cuneo. This top Italian wine is a deep and dark granite red and has a aromatic bouquet, it is alcoholic at a minimum of 13%.

     

    Barolo, when young has a harshness of its tannin when drinking; leave it for at least five years. You can’t sell ordinary Barolo until at least three years. Riserva Italian wine must be at least five years old. The drinking temperature should be 16-18°C (60.8-64.4°F).

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  • Pinot Noir Grapes

    A difficult 'customer' described by one well-known winemaker as a 'moving target of a grape variety', on top form Pinot Noir can make the most complex and hedonistic of red wines.

    pinot noir  Pinot Noir has fewer colouring pigments than other dark-skinned varieties, so it can appear to be lighter or more aged, when compared to wines such and almost inky on occasions. There are exceptions to the rule, such as the wines from the likes of Romanée Conti in Burgundy's Côte D'Or.

     Pinot Noir is a prime example of the importance of terroir, the term used to describe the growing conditions of the grape such as the soil, drainage, microclimate, and exposure to the sun. Pinot Noir is an excellent wine when the grapes have been grown in Burgungy but an altogether more challenging prospect when grown elsewhere.

     Carneros and the Central Coast of California, Oregonn the Yarra Valleym and cooler spots in Australia, are consistently producing 'typical' and different expressions of Pinot Noir. New Zealand, via Martinborough, Marlborough, Central Otago and South Africam via Walker Bay, are also now producing decent Pinot Noir. The Pinot Noir nose is often reminiscent of paspberry, strawberry, and redcurrant when young, taking on subtle, earthy, leafy, prune-like aromas with age. It is also one the classic Champagne varieties.

    Burgundy,  Alsace, Champagne and Sancerre in France, Germany, Italy, New Zealand, South Africa, Switzerland, and California, Oregon ans Washington State in the United States.

     

    Cabernet Sauvignon Grapes

    cabernet sauvignon Grapeswhite-grapes

    One of the word's most popular black grapes, Cabernet Sauvignon's deep colour, blackcurrant aroma and flavour is the backbone of many is the backbone of many full-bodid red wines.

    Merlot Grapes

    Merlot Grapes white-grapes 

     A member of the Bordeaux family, Merlot, in constrast to Cabernet Sauvignon, is soft, fruity, fleshy, and less tannic. It's the principal grape variety in the wines of St Emilion and Pomerol, and is often blended with Cabernet Franc.

    Syrah Grapes

    Syrah Grapeswhite-grapes

    The Hill of Hermitage and vineyards steeply overlooking the Rhône provide the home of Syrah and one of the most famous place names associated with this great grape variety. Hermitage, Cornas and Côte Rôtie are full-bodied red wines, while Crozes Hermitage and St Jopeph are generally a touch lighter. Syrah is a hardy grape, growing well in poor soil, such as the

    Other Red Grapes

    other red Grapeswhite-grapes

    An extremely versatile variety of grapes, Chenin Blanc is capable of making dry and crisp white wines that are great as an aperitif, through to medium, unctuous and sweet styles. Due to the keeen and vibrant acidity often found in Chenin Blanc grape, they make brilliant food wines and can stay in good shape for many years after the vitange.

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  • Pommard - Red French Wine

    POMMARD

    Without doubt the best-known Burgundy in the world. The name resonates just like the wine's taste - of a thunderclap on a hot autumn evening.

     The colour is an exciting red and the bouq uet (black cherry, herbs, leather) and taste are both strong. This is a full, fatty wine that is both powerful and harmonious. A more classic traditional Burgundy is not to be found.

    VOLNAY

    This   red French wine   is strangely   better   known with painters, sculptors, and writers than gastronomes. Perhaps this is because of its almost artistic, tender, and feminine qualities. Volnay is certainly not a macho wine. It has a very pure and clear red colour and the nose suggests violets and blackcurrant or sloes when young, which later develop into a complex bouquet with an assortment of fruits, flowers, herbs, and toadstools. It is a rounded, velvety wine that above all is sensual.

    The better wines originate from the Premier Cru climats. This French wine merits serving with fine food.

    BURGUNDY WINE *** FRENCH WINE

    MONTHELIE

    It is impossible to explain why Monthelie has not yet been truly discovered. Exceptionally pleasant white and red French wine is made here which is certainly not inferior to neighbouring Volnay. It is a wine then for the astute who want quality at a lower price. The red wines are better than the whites which are classic Burgundian Chardonnay with lots of butter (sometimes too much) and wood in the nose with a mild but full taste. The best Monthelie whites also contain hints of toast, white flowers, and honey with the occasional suggestion of Virginian tobacco.

    The red Monthelie French wine is a seductive clear, and cheerful red colour. Its nose is fruity when young (blackberry, bilberry, blackcurrant) with occasional floral notes   (violets). When more mature this changes to the classic fungal aromas while the fruitiness reminds of home-made jam. It is a rich, lithe, generous, and friendly French wine which is at its best after several years maturing in the bottle.

    BURGUNDY WINE *** FRENCH WINE

    AUXEY-DURESSES

    The same hill has two very different sides to it. Red  French wine is made from one side and white wine from the other. White Auxey-Duresses is pale yellow, very aromatic (fruity and minerals) with the occasional suggestion of exotic fruit such as mango.

     The taste is warm, open, and generous. Red Auxey-Duresses steels the show. Do not drink it too young when it is still rather rough. The colour often tends towards granite red and the aromas evoke ripe fruit. It is a warm, full wine with a considerable structure.

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  • Premieres Cotes de Bordeaux

    Premieres Cotes de Bordeaux French Wine

    premieres Cotes de BordeauxThe wine-growing area on the right bank of the Garonne is about 60 km (37 miles) long and runs from the suburbs of Bordeaux to the border with the Cotes de Bordeaux St-Macaire. The landscape is hilly and there are magnificent views across the river and the vineyards of Graves. The underlying beds are varied but chiefly chalk and gravel on the hills and alluvial deposits closer to the Garonne.

    Production is mainly of red French wines but some smooth to liquorous white wines are made in the southeastern tip close to Cadillac,

  • Red Grapes

    red grape Red or 'black' grapes produce different levels of colour and body, the colour coming from the grape skin. Creating a light-bodied red wine depends on the amount of structure obtained from extract and tannins that the wine takes on.

      These 'flavourings' provide depth and longevity. Medium-bodied wines will have taste that may be a direct result of the grape variety or varieties used in the blend, the climatic conditions or even, in some cases, the vintange.
     Thick-skinned grape varieties, such as Cabernet Sauvignon, are capable of making full-bodied, dense, and long-lived wines. Winemaking also plays a part, as colour and extract can be controlled as part of the process to make wines that are well balanced and harmonious.

     Light-bodied red wines include Beaujolais Primeur, medium-bodied red wines include Chinon and Barossa Vally Shiraz is among the most popular of the full-bodied red wines.

     

    Cabernet Sauvignon Grapes

    cabernet sauvignon Grapeswhite-grapes

    One of the word's most popular black grapes, Cabernet Sauvignon's deep colour, blackcurrant aroma and flavour is the backbone of many is the backbone of many full-bodid red wines.

    Merlot Grapes

    Merlot Grapes white-grapes 

     A member of the Bordeaux family, Merlot, in constrast to Cabernet Sauvignon, is soft, fruity, fleshy, and less tannic. It's the principal grape variety in the wines of St Emilion and Pomerol, and is often blended with Cabernet Franc.

    Pinot Noir Grapes

    pinot noir Grapes white-grapes 

    A difficult 'customer' described by one well-known winemaker as a 'moving target of a grape variety', on top form Pinot Noir can make the most complex and hedonistic of red wines.   Pinot Noir has fewer colouring pigments than other dark-skinned varieties, so it can appear to be lighter or more aged, when compared to wines such and almost inky on occasions.

    Syrah Grapes

    Syrah Grapeswhite-grapes

    The Hill of Hermitage and vineyards steeply overlooking the Rhône provide the home of Syrah and one of the most famous place names associated with this great grape variety. Hermitage, Cornas and Côte Rôtie are full-bodied red wines, while Crozes Hermitage and St Jopeph are generally a touch lighter. Syrah is a hardy grape, growing well in poor soil, such as the

    Other Red Grapes

    other red Grapeswhite-grapes

    An extremely versatile variety of grapes, Chenin Blanc is capable of making dry and crisp white wines that are great as an aperitif, through to medium, unctuous and sweet styles. Due to the keeen and vibrant acidity often found in Chenin Blanc grape, they make brilliant food wines and can stay in good shape for many years after the vitange.

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  • Rio Douro Wine

     The Rio Douro (golden river) lends its name to the north-eastern part of Portugal. This wine-growing territory has been known for its wines for more than 2,000 years, especially for the very

    special vinho do Porto, which is better known as port or port wine.Whilst port has been made here for centuries it seems as if far more table wines are now also being made in the Douro valley. In recent years indeed there has been more unfortified wine produced than port. The vineyards of the Upper Douro start about 62 miles (100 km inland of the harbour town of Porto. The majority of them are sited on hills of basalt and granite. The climate is fairly dry of the semi-continental type with fairly big temperature ranges between the hot summers and cold winters.

    Good quality red and white wines are produced here, varying in style depending on the variety of grapes used and the wishes of the wine-maker. The choice for white wines is made from Malvasia Pina, Rabigato, Viosinho, Donzelinho, Verdelho, and many others. The red wine grapes are Bastardo, Mourisco Tinto, Tinta Roriz, Tinta Prancisca, Touriga Nacional, and Tinto cao. Although the different types of Douro wine vary widely there has been an enormous leap forward in their quality in recent decades. Douro Branco is a fresh lively and sometimes very aromatic wine with a delicate and refined taste. It is certainly not a heavy wine. This wine must be at least 11 % alcohol and it is required to have aged for at least nine months in the bottle before being sold. Drinking temperature is 50- 53.6°F (10- 12°C) .

    Douro Tinto exists in many styles. Some of them are young, fruity, almost playful, while others are intentionally more robust and powerful. This depends on the grapes used, method of vinification, and length of cask maturing that has been undergone. All Douro reds must be at least eighteen months old before they may be sold and contain at least 11 % alcohol. Whichever Douro you may choose, they are always surprisingly good value for money.

     
    The modern style wines are very colourful and fruity.They are velvet smooth, juicy, and very tasty. The traditional style wines are fairly dark, very aromatic, often somewhat rustic with hints of terroir including granite. Drinking temperature is 53.6-57.2°F (12- 14°C ) for the modern-style wines and 57.2- 62.6°F (14-17°C) for the traditional ones.

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  • Rivesaltes French Wines

      This is the largest appellation for vin doux naturels at 10,821 hectares. Moderately sweet wines used to be made here once from both red and white Grenache grapes. There has been a change under way here though since 1996. The areas cultivated have been significantly reduced, with the yield per hectare lowered as the growers seem to have become aware of the potential quality of their French wine. Various grape varieties are used to make these vin doux naturels: red and white Grenache, Macabeu, Malvoisie, and Muscat. There are two types of Rivesaltes: the amber-coloured wine produced with white grapes, and the roof-tile red wine of at least 50 per cent Grenache Noir. The better cuvées (Rivesaltes hors d'age) should be kept for at least five years.

    The young ordinary Rivesaltes should be drunk at approx. 12°C (53 .6°F), while the better ones are best at 14-16°C (57.2-60.8°F) for a good French wine taste.

     

    Muscat de Rivesaltes

    Amidst the vineyards of Maury, Rivesaltes, and Banyuls, 4,540 hectares are planted with Muscat of Alexandria and Muscat Petits Grains. The Muscat of Alexandria imparts breadth to the Muscat de Rivesaltes in addition to aromas of ripe fruits, raisins, and roses, while the Muscat Petits Grains is responsible for the heady bouquet of exotic citrus fruit and suggestion of menthol for a good French wine. This Muscat de Rivesaltes is at its fruitiest when still very young. Drink this French wine at 8-10°C (46.4-50°F) .

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