Week 50 – Pinot Blanc

We tasted: Pinot Blanc 1er Cru Cotes de Grevenmacher, Domaines Vinsmoselle (Luxembourg), Vinoteca, £14.50

Tasting Notes

Emma says: “And so for the final white grape in our 52 week challenge. The order of the grapes we have tasted has been quite random, but I’m pleased we have this one to end with.

It has been difficult to track it down. It doesn’t seem to be favoured on any supermarket or bar list. But we’re fortunate to live in London where just about every grape can be found and we were finally able to find it in a favourite wine shop/bar of mine, Vinoteca.

Interestingly our one is from Luxembourg which is perhaps one of the few wine growing regions I have never tasted wine from. A fitting final white adventure. Pinot Bianco is the Italian name for this grape but it is also known as Pinot Blanc in France, or Weissburgunder in Austria or Germany. It is grown in similar northern Italian regions to Pinot Grigio and does share a sprightly character with delicate fruit flavours. However I’ve always felt that Pinot Bianco has a touch more tutti frutti appeal and a creamy finish which means it is more interesting to me. I wish we’d see a few bland Pinot Grigios give up their shelf space to this grape.

To the wine we tasted. I thought it was a brilliant example. The cool climate of the Luxembourg hills gave it a really spritzy and zingy acid freshness. The aroma was delicate but fragrant with hints of papaya, peach and orange blossom. To taste it was chalky and mineral but with that gentle apricot and candied peel character, plus touches of acacia honey and cream to give it a soft sweet finish. This tasting reaffirmed to me that Pinot Bianco is really an overlooked grape, let’s hope a few of our readers agree with me.

A final geek fact. Pinot Bianco is actually a genetic mutation of Pinot Noir. Sometimes Pinot Noir produces the odd white bunch of grapes as a single cane on a vine and this is Pinot Bianco. Perhaps this is the explanation for the underlying fruit-y-ness of the grape.”

Andy says: “This is very probably the first time I have ever tasted Pinot Blanc, so I will have to take Emma’s word for it that it is a brilliant example.

The first thing to note is the acidity. It’s very high, and a little wince inducing, but not near as much as the eye watering Bacchus from a few weeks ago. When ice cold, the wine was very pleasant to drink, but as it warmed up it became somewhat hard going and started to stray into the still-as-yet-undefined ‘winey’ zone.

It was fragrant and there are hints of fruit, but none that I could readily identify. If only wine had flavour characteristics borrowed from crisps (chips for our American friends), then I’d be world class at this. I again got what I call coconut, like a coconut ring biscuit (cookie for our American friends), and perhaps this is what Emma describes as ‘cream’. I sense the coconut flavour a lot in wine so really do need to nail down what it is. It’s not oak, definitely not in this case.”

Buying Guide

Pinot Blanc or Pinot Bianco are the same grape made in France or Italy. A grape that is often confused with Pinot Grigio and does share some flavour characters in its crisp orchard fruit profile. However it can deliver wines with a bit more interest and charm, expect more peachy fruit and a touch more ripeness in flavour. We will be seeking one out from Alsace as a region that tends to produce some of the most characterful styles.

Week 48 – Godello

We tasted: El Gato Gordo, Majestic, £11.99

Tasting Notes

Emma says: “Godello isn’t the easiest grape to find so I was really pleased to spot one in the trusty local Majestic. In fact, that is one of the things I’ve enjoyed the most of our 52 Grapes experience, it has made me peek outside the supermarket doors where I work to see what interesting things the others are getting up to.

In recent years Godello has swiftly moved onto my list of reliable party pleaser whites. It has a soft fruit profile which is similar to a cool climate Chardonnay, in its peachy flavours, and it is brisk and fresh giving it ready appeal. The wine I found was pricier than the typical Godello I buy, so I was hoping it would show me that Godello can achieve an extra layer of sophistication above this.

I’m happy to say the wine did really impress me. I was trying to have a “dry” night at home and only planned to have a few sips but that proved really hard work. I love a good Macon Villages and it had a lot of characters reminiscent of that style of wine to me. To start the aroma had a lovely perfume, like orange blossom with a honeyed twist, plus some apricot notes.

To taste it was similar, a mix of fruits from papaya to lemon zest plus some sophistication from a touch of minerality adding a toasty, smoky twist to the finish. I’d seek this one out again as a nice wine to break the rhythm and routine of what I normally drink.

An interesting sub note for geeks, this was from the hilly Bierzo region, a region mostly known for reds, the majority of wines I have tasted from this grape is from the valley area of Valdeorras, Galicia. They are neighbours, but this could account for why it had a particularly good dose of acidity which would come from the higher altitude hilly sites.”

Andy says: “When I first tasted the wine a few days ago, I didn’t really like it and thought that it was another one of those mysterious ‘winey’ whites.

But, tasting again a few days later, it has mellowed out a touch and is better, but it’s still not wowing me. The aroma is a touch too floral for me, and the taste is just a little too much in the limey/sour spectrum for this to be a winner.”

Buying Guide

Godello is a lesser known Spanish white grape coming from North West Spain. It is also known as Gouveio in Portugal. If you are a fan of delicately fruity but soft tasting whites this could be one searching out. It is often a grape that appeals to lovers of unoaked Chardonnay. You may need to look in a specialist wine shop to track this one down.

Week 46 – Bacchus

We tasted: Camel Valley Bacchus 2016, Cornwall, England £14.99

Tasting Notes

Emma says: “There are very few weeks that I don’t look forward to with relish on our 52 grape adventure. I’m afraid that Bacchus week is one, as a near second to Pinotage.

It seemed right to incorporate it into our 52 because it is fast becoming a grape that is synonymous with English wines. I would dearly love to embrace English wines and make this week’s column a patriotic nod to the wine industry that is beginning to evolve here. However, the honest truth is I’d go for a bottle of British bubbly above Bacchus any day.

Whilst on our weekly shopping quest I was happy to find a Camel Valley winery version of Bacchus at the local Waitrose because this is a winery that is located in one of the sunnier regions for wine; Cornwall. I was hoping that extra dose of sunlight might tame the frequently searing high acidity of English wines. If you are an acid junkie this may just be the week for you.
In support of Bacchus as a grape it has character. Often described as “Sauvignon on steroids” because it takes the herbaceous, pungent characters of that grape and times it by about ten. Pleasingly it can have a British hedgerow character which makes me feel it has that sense of place we like to think of as “terroir”.

Onto the wine in question and I can promise I was keeping an open mind. The aroma was bang on expectations, a bold nettle and cut grass character with a fresh blackcurrant, like Sauvignon but more on the herbal and fruit side. Pleasingly there was a gun smoke note that I thought gave it more dimension than many Bacchus I’ve tried. To taste that acid did come through like a slap on the face and dominated the sensation overall. But underneath there was a fresh herbal flavour, like a wheatgrass shot if you’ve ever been to a trendy juice bar. The mineral smoke edge continued and I felt the flavours weren’t bitter but most definitely on that green spectrum. If I’d had more than a glass I’d definitely be reaching for a settlers tablet.

#ConfessionTime – I may be burnt by my first ever experience of English wine. My naughty sister plied me with English wine from a family friends vineyard at the tender age of 11. Soon after my mother found me giddy and nauseous, I think the phrase I used was “why is the ceiling moving”. Perhaps this early form of wine torture has tainted my feelings to local wine.”

Andy says: “My initial reaction to the first taste was that this was very, very acidic. I’m still learning, and so doubted if what I was sensing as acid was correct.

“Is this acidic?” I asked Emma. “Very.” came the no nonsense reply. It reminded me of Week 25’s Assyrtiko, which gave me the ‘sour shudder’. Yep, same here.

Relieved, I was curious to find out just how acidic it was. The fact sheet on the Camel Valley site has it as pH 3.15. Having no idea what that meant, I delved further and found an acidity chart at Wine Folly, and basically it is at the ‘acidic’ end of ‘acidic’, not helped by its dryness, as some more sweetness would tone it down some.

Colour wise, it would be pale straw, perhaps even very pale straw as it is almost water coloured. There’s a hint of apple, and it reminds me of the ‘sour apple‘ hard boiled sweets from the 80s. I didn’t get the smoke that Emma mentions, and I can just about get the connection to Sauvignon Blanc.”

Buying Guide

Bacchus is fast becoming the grape that England is famed for when it comes to still wines. It is a hardy grape when it comes to putting up with the English less than warm climate. Expect a grape that is often called “Sauvignon on steroids” it is so powerful. Any English Bacchus you can find will do.

Week 44 – Vermentino

We tasted: Nord Est Vermentino 2016, Majestic, £9.99

Tasting Notes

Emma says: “I was feeling a little off last night so apologies if this note is short. Maybe you’ll have to trust Andy’s note as the true evaluation of our grape this week.

It was a shame since I’m a big fan of Vermentino and was especially pleased when we found on of my favourite producers at the local Majestic.

For my brief taste of the Vermentino I was reminded exactly why this is one of my favourite lesser known whites. The aroma was bright and glistening with delicate herbal notes sitting alongside grapefruit and a touch of kumquat, plus this burst of sea salt that I always find with the Sardinian versions of this wine. To taste that saline quality was really at the fore, then the fruit started to come through as peaches and melon with some really attractive herbal dimensions like bay leaf, fennel and a touch of aniseed which is a typical character of this style. There was a little weight and texture which can often happen with Vermentino but it was nicely balanced by fresh acidity. Altogether this is a wine I’d like to stock up with as a weekday white; once I feel better of course.

And to note I think that the Sardinian versions particularly fit this description from my previous experience. Andy thought that the wine tasted slightly like Viognier and he is right. It has the same problem as that grape that it can become weighty and overly tropical in fruit if grown in warm climates. I sometimes find that in versions coming from Tuscany or the Languedoc in France. The island breezes in Sardinia allow the grape to ripen to just the right point and therefore deliver for me the most elegant styles.”

Andy says: “Possibly the first time I’ve understood what Emma means when she describes something as herbal.

Unfortunately I can’t really offer a better descriptor or description. If you’ve ever been to Prague, you’ve probably been forced to try Becherovka, and most likely picked up a bottle and abandoned it, unopened, at the back of your drinks cabinet. Well if you can remember that taste, and dilute it to homeopathic levels, that’s kind of it. For me, anyway. Genepi would work too.

Straight out of the fridge, this was crisp and refreshing, with a nice rounded acidity that kept you interested but picked up on the social cues and didn’t hang around and make things awkward. There was an illusion of some residual CO2, but it was probably the prickle of the acid. It was a bit like the Furmint from a few weeks ago, but with life injected.

Taste wise, I have to default to the standard ‘citrussy limes’, but as the glass warmed it became more violet, reminding me of week two’s Viognier, which I was not a fan of, and I liked this less the warmer it got. So, I need to drink faster, as when chilled this was very nice indeed.”

Buying Guide

Vermentino is a lovely vibrant grape with a herbal floral aroma and often a rich fruit driven palate. It is most commonly found in the South France, Languedoc or coastal Tuscany. But its best homeland might be Sardinia, where the cool coastal breezes add a fresh lift to the wine. We will be seeking out one from there.

 

Crisp and refreshing, nice acidity, illusion of bubble, like the furmint but with some more life. Citrussy limes

Went violet-y later on, bit like viognier, less good as it warmed up

Week 42 – Furmint

We tasted: 2016 Furmint ‘F’, Tornai (Nagy-Somloi, Hungary) 12.5% Vol £11.95 Vinoteca

Tasting Notes

Emma says: “I was surprised that the search for Furmint wasn’t that hard, but maybe that is in contrast to the Marsanne mission last week. Oh I miss the heady weeks of tasting Merlot. I’m lucky to have a gorgeous wine bar/come shop near the office called Vinoteca and found a Furmint there. Served to me by a very excited Hungarian who was pleased I was specifically looking for a wine from her native country.

I’ve tasted a few dry Tokajs in my time. That is the term often used in Hungary to indicate it is the Furmint grape used to make a dry wine rather than their more famous sweet version. It can be blended with a bit of other local grapes like Harsevelu too. And I have found that some producers tend to oak it quite a bit which gives it a more rich and spicy character.

The thing about Furmint as a grape is that it has massive acidity and not a great deal of fruit flavour. I am a faithful acid junkie but even Furmint has challenged me in the past. I’m interested to see what Andy makes of it.

Onto the wine in question. I was really pleased by the aroma, it had a nice marzipan character overlaying quince paste and a salty sea air note. But to taste it was totally different, the acidity hit me like a slap on the face and after that I really didn’t get much in the way of fruit. A bit of green apple, but then more salinity and a firm mineral bite, I can only describe it as licking wet stones. If I had to compare it to another wine it would be Chablis but it makes that style of wine positively fruity in comparison. It also makes me think of the wines we taste just as they have finished ferment in our post harvest visits, at that point they are full of nervy acidity and are difficult to taste and I’m sad to say that was how I felt tonight too. Perhaps it would be interesting to give it more time to age since that would soften out the acidity a bit more and that often allows some other interesting flavour dimensions to come through.

We had it with a leek and gorgonzola risotto which I would have thought is a top food match; creamy so the acidity is balanced out and without bold flavours that would overshadow the wine. It did work relatively well but the wine is so delicate in flavour even that type of meal did overshadow it a bit.”

Andy says: “Having just read Emma’s notes, I need to make a small modification to mine. I too [like to think I] am an ‘acid junkie’, but I didn’t get acid here. Maybe it was all the cheese I ate while cooking.

I found this wine to be quite dull. It was very dry, and there was no real flavour of any description, I can’t even describe it as ‘wine-y’. It was like it was flat and needed some fizz – in the same way that flat Coke tastes nothing like Coke. It needed some life in it. It did become a little more flavoursome as it warmed up, but it was nothing to write home about.

I’ve had the sweet version of this grape, and that’s winning.”

Buying Guide

Furmint is a Hungarian white grape that is most typically used as one of the grapes to make their famous sweet wine Tokaji. It may be difficult to find a dry Furmint so if you have trouble then any Tokaji would be a nice experience as the first sweet wine for our year of grape adventures.

Week 40 – Marsanne

We tasted: Tahbilk Marsanne 2010, Fortnum & Mason, £16.50

Tasting Notes

Emma says: “Here I am, just home from a work night out and feeling like a large glass of water to dilute the results. Sadly this isn’t going to be the case, 52 Grapes must take priority, especially since this week I had to go to a special effort to search out this rare grape from a shop in London.

I’ve only tasted this wine a few times in my life and it is certainly distinct. If you’ve tasted a mature Semillon from Australia the experience is similar. Andy thought it was oaked and I know exactly why. The ageing characters that come from this grape give a distinct smoky, spicy and candle wax character that is similar to the aromas you get when a wine is oaked.  So much so, that I decided to google the wine to make sure I was correct and it really didn’t have oak. I think Andy still thought I was fibbing.

In total the experience of tasting this wine really lived up to expectations.  It has a brilliant vibrancy of fruit, tropical in character with lime, pineapple aromas along with that waxy and smokey note. Then to taste it has more of the zesty lime, a bit of mango and papaya along with a creamy richness and that similar waxy overtone. It feels like a dry Riesling that isn’t as pithy or acidic and more soft in tropical fruit but with equal dimension. It makes me wish more people would have a play with Marsanne, it is a grape with real character that is overlooked and would add more interest to the wine world. And what an age worthy grape, given it has eight years of age, this wine is still showing real vibrancy of fruit that is really impressive.”

Andy says: “My initial reaction was, ‘Well, that’s got some oak on it’. How wrong I was.

This example is their ‘Museum Release’, which means the wine is held back until it begins to age, and the wine becomes richer and rounder. The results of the ageing can fool an amateur taster like myself that the wine had sat in some oak.

Emma came home and I said ‘It’s very oaky’. She had one sip, ‘Hmmm, no I think it’s age’. It was quite annoying, but hopefully it was prior knowledge of the grape/winery and not some sort of super hero skill.

Taste wise, I was a little disappointed at first as there wasn’t much going on. It was just flat and dull, and very linear, no peaks or troughs at all. But, it was fresh out the fridge, and once it had warmed a little it opened up and I could get the spicy honeysuckle notes that the tasting notes say you should. Slightly oily in texture, and quite dry too. It could do with a bit more zing for me, but a very nice wine all in all, and good test for a noob.”

Buying Guide

Marsanne is a grape that heralds from the Rhone region of France. In the Northern Rhone it takes centre stage party blended with Roussanne; look out for St Joseph or Hermitage whites for this style, be warned they are pricey. For this reason we will seek out a producer in Australia known for this this grape, Tahbilk. They make a 100% Marsanne that will give us the best chance to really taste its character.

Week 39 – Arneis

Ascheri Langhe Arneis

Emma says: “Shuffle over Gavi, this little grape is the northern Italian white that really deserves the spotlight. It has that bone dry crisp and refreshing style that fans of Pinot Grigio love but so much more in flavour. 

As I wrote in my page on this grape it’s also a favourite with locals. And I love the fact its name means “little rascal”

This version from Ascheri is a perfect example. Slightly honeysuckle floral on the nose, but it really comes alive on the palate, pear compote and cream flavours but that fresh acidity to balance that makes the mouth water. I don’t think you’d find many other examples better than this. 

For more ideas on other grapes to try or food matches check out the Arneis page I’ve written. But my perfect food match for this wine would be a lovely chicken breast casserole in a creamy sauce, the peachy flavours of the wine would combine nicely and the fresh acidity could cut through the sauce.”

Andy says: “Disclaimer: I tasted this after eating some home made garlic bread, so not ideal palate preparation.

I quite liked this wine, it was clean and crisp, but to be honest I don’t have much more to say, it’s just a bit ‘white wine-y’. It’s definitely fruity, but I’m not really getting any of the ‘classic’ apple and peachy notes that I’m supposed to. Garlic, yes, apple, no. Would I drink it again? Yeah, it’s not offensive in any way, just a bit middle of the road.”

Week 37 – Grillo

We tasted: 2017 Grillo Sicilia, Rupe Secca, £8.45, Haynes Hanson & Clark

Tasting Notes

Emma says: “Our grape buying quest has taken us far and wide but this week was a special pleasure. Whilst in the Cotswolds for a wedding we popped by a high street in a pretty town called Stow on Wold. As we walked past at least a dozen tea shops, this beautiful wine shop Haynes Hanson & Clarke emerged like a mirage.

One of those traditional shops with wooden crates everywhere and bottles that all look shiny and new. This was also a lovely coincidence because a great friend Siobhan who I studied the MW with is their buying director but I had entirely forgotten they had a countryside off shoot to their London shop. If I’m honest, when we stepped into the shop I wasn’t holding much hope for an unusual wine like Grillo to be on their shelves, yet within their select Italian wine range it certainly was. So this glass sitting before me right now feels a little fateful. I hope it lives up to that.

Grillo is a special grape for me because soon after I passed the MW I was asked to do a talk on this very grape in Sicily, to an audience of food and wine critics. That daunting feat was made worse by the fact that just before I was due on stage, I was introduced to Sicily’s very own Grillo specialist, and told they would be in the audience. Fortunately I managed to fumble my way through the talk, partially by asking the said specialist to tell us everything he knew, and he seemed delighted. As a result, I’m happy to say I know more than the average person about this lovely grape.

We mentioned in our notes that it is a cross between two other local grapes and I think this is what gives it the diverse character. It has this lovely honeysuckle, floral aroma but with a rich tropical core of fruit that has a touch of spice making it feel exotic in style. I would say this is the perfect grape for someone who typically likes whites with a bit of richness and body like Chardonnay or Viognier.

But onto this particular Grillo which is happily one I’ve never tried before. It shows the grape brilliantly. The aroma is bright, perfumed with a veritable fruit salad array of characters. The palate is just as fruity but not in a confected or syrupy way so that it feels fresh and not heavy to taste. There is just the perfect amount of acidity to the wine that holds these flavours up and keeps the palate zingy. Altogether a very satisfying experience because I really feel we’ve experience Grillo as it should be. I hope whichever wine everyone else manages to taste is as good as this.

Andy says: “It’s been a hectic week of socialising for me this week, and to be honest, I only had a couple of mouthfuls of this while I popped home to get changed before going to the residents’ AGM. Yes, it was as exciting as it sounds.

I would say that it had a lovely fruity aroma and was beautifully clean and crisp on the palate, with a perfect balance between the zingy acidity and fruity flavours. It really did go down very easily, and is perhaps one of my favourite whites so far.”

Buying Guide

Grillo is a Sicilian grape that is becoming increasingly popular. It has the richness & fragrance of Chardonnay with a slightly spicy character. So check out the Italian section of the local shop and look for Grillo on the label.

Week 36 – Verdejo

We tasted: Beronia Rueda Verdejo, £8.99, Waitrose

Tasting Notes

Emma says:”I really wanted to find a 2017 vintage Verdejo this week because I have always seen this as a grape that needs to be youthful to show well.

After a lot of searching I found one from a respected producer, Beronia, that was 2016. I felt that was a good enough guarantee that it would be a decent example. Beronia is best known as a traditional Rioja producer, but they must be branching out into this neighbouring region of Reuda where this wine comes from.

I wasn’t expecting much from Verdejo week because wines I’ve tasted from this grape are often quaffable but equally forgettable and even sometimes dilute. When I tried to memorise the grape for my tasting exams I always thought it was somewhere between a Sauvignon and Pinot Grigio but nothing distinct in itself.
Fortunately buying a wine from Beronia was a good bet because I was nicely surprised by the experience. The age gave the aroma a sage leaf, soft herbal character contrasted by honeysuckle and lime blossom, a bit like an aged Riesling. Then to taste it became almost tropical, with mild pineapple fruit punch flavours, and a limey tang. I also got a bit of slate-y minerality that gave it dimension. These flavours lasted quite well which also impressed me. Ultimately it was a lovely citrus driven, thirst quenching wine with a bit more oomph than I normally get from Verdejo.”

Andy says: “I’m noticing a pattern in that I struggle to describe the whites. Reds seem easier, I guess they have more flavourful characteristics.

This one, again, I’m going to say tastes winey, but not as winey as others. That’s not very helpful as I still haven’t worked out what that winey taste is. It’s also limey sour, dry, and a bit oily. I preferred this one crisp and cold fresh from the fridge, it got more sour as it warmed up. I did at one point think I got a taste of almond, but that really is about as far as it goes with this one. ”

Buying Guide

Verdejo is a lesser known white grape from Spain. We will be seeking out one from the region Reuda where this grape has become increasingly popular in recent years.

Week 33 – Falanghina

We tasted: Falanghina, £11.99, Majestic Wines

Tasting Notes

Emma says: “An Italian grape this week and one with a name that I think does it a disservice. Pronounced Fal-an-gheena, it really doesn’t have the prettiest of names. It has an aggressive tone which is a sensory turn off for me. Asking for a glass of Gavi or Fiano (other Italian whites) in a wine bar sounds so much more elegant.

I was desperate to find a recent vintage of this grape. So many traditional Italian importers think Falanghina is a grape that tastes just as good in two or three years, but I think it tastes best when fresh from the harvest. It comes from the Southern region of Campania and it doesn’t have naturally high acidity, age can turn it flat and dull.

We found a 2017 vintage and I hope anyone else who is joining us got that too. Andy has for the first time tasted before me, so watch out for his review below, it may be the most honest so far…

Onto my tasting of this wine. I’ll start with the fragrance, whilst this isn’t a naturally aromatic grape I was pleased to find ours had a vibrant expression, a pear compote note with hints of cinnamon spice, almost sweet and tropical but gentle. To taste it has a weight that isn’t typical in Italian whites but makes it nice and smooth. The flavours aren’t pronounced but they are unique in a combination of pear, quince and gentle peppery notes. There is a mineral smoky dimension that also gives it finesse. It has one of those flavour profiles that is difficult to express since it isn’t necessarily fruity there is almost a savoury tang to it. I think that is why this grape is special it is distinct and difficult to compare to other grapes you may have tasted before. And for that reason I would say it is well worth seeking out.

As for food matches, the delicate flavours of this wine mean it shouldn’t go with food that is too powerful. But given its mineral and savoury dimensions it can match up well to food as a complimentary flavour. I think it would be a beautiful match for a plain grilled fish but potentially one for a pasta dish heavy in parmesan or creamy sauce.

PS – I told the guy who served me at Majestic we would be reviewing his wine on this blog and he seemed ever so disinterested – so I’m leaving this calling card to see if we can get him to respond!

Andy Says: “I’m taking a massive risk here, as I’m tasting and writing before Emma for the very first time. I’m about to show myself up.

The first thing to note is that the bottle was incredibly difficult to open. The rim was rounded and didn’t let the corkscrew latch on, so much swearing was done. It took a good few minutes to open, the cork was incredibly stiff.

Battle over and cork discarded, I poured. First thing I noticed was the incredibly pale colour. I decided it was ‘pale straw’, and then looked at the handy Wine Folly colour chart. I’d only gone and nailed it. Woop. High fives all round, except I was home alone, so let out a little sigh instead.

On the nose, I get a slight hint of toasty biscuit, maybe even a hint of butter, like shortbread.
Taste wise, it doesn’t have the ‘winey’ taste that I still haven’t identified. It’s fruity, a touch floral (not overly so in anyway) and not that sweet. I thought there was quite a bit of acid going on, I felt my mouth pucker and water on the first sip/mouthful, but it lessened after that, so maybe it was just my palate adjusting to the several beers I’d had before the wine. The bottle says tropical fruits and aromatic herbals. I’ll give them the first, but herbals is something I’m still struggling to taste.”

Buying Guide

Falanghina is a white grape coming from Campania in the South of Italy. It isn’t really produced anywhere else. So just head to the Italian white section of your local store and see if you can find it.